Lions climb to no. 17 in nation at 14-3
Highest ranking in school history
Team on road for next three games
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Division I Top 25 Coaches Poll was released on Tuesday afternoon. Moving up to no. 17 was Southwestern Assemblies of God University, their highest ranking since joining the NAIA over a decade ago.
The Lions are now 14-3 after winning twice last week. They defeated Our Lady of the Lake University, 77-70, in San Antonio.
It was SAGU’s first win in four tries over OLLU at the Mabee Gymnasium.
The Saints, 27-8 a year ago, won the Red River Athletic Conference and handed the Lions their largest loss of the season 98-79, in the Alamo City.
Our Lady (10-7 overall, 8-3 in RRAC) was the clear pre-season pick of RRAC coaches, and have the talent to finish in first for the third time in their five year history.
The Lions are 8-2 in league games with 12 more to play. Seven of those games are at home.
Less than two days after the OLLU win, Team Purple tamed Paul Quinn College, 67-55, at the Tigers’ Den in southeast Dallas.
SAGU was no. 21 a week ago, having garnered 94 voting points. Their previous high in the Coaches Poll occurred on December 4, when they were no. 20 and picked up 111 points. This week saw them collect 142.
Three other RRAC members appear, including Texas College (13-4) at no. 24. They were at no. 10 just a week ago, but key injuries led to a pair of narrow setbacks; 74-72 at Wiley College and 55-51 to Jarvis Christian College.
SAGU plays this Saturday, Jan. 19, in Hawkins, Texas at 4:00pm against Jarvis (6-10, 4-6 RRAC).
Texas Wesleyan University (13-5, 8-4 RRAC) is among those receiving votes, at no. 28, while LSU-Shreveport (11-4, 7-3 RRAC) is no. 33.
All three of the Lions losses came to teams in the poll; no. 7 Westmont College (69-65 in OT), Wesleyan and LSUS… all at home.
SAGU has won each of their ten games away from home. Last winter the Lions were 15-8 in contests played on the road or at neutral sites (tournaments).
The team’s M.O. is defense, allowing the opposition to make just 37% of their shots. That figure rates #2 in the nation.
Rebounding also describes this club. The Lions are #3 in the NAIA in grabbing offensive boards to the tune of 16 per game, and are #5 in total rebounds at 43 per contest.
The Lions are also in the Top 25 in making three-point baskets (7.3 per game) and in steals (10.4 pgm).
For a complete list of individual statistics for players, click here: Player Stats
SAGU has two road games next week; Tuesday at Texas College (13-5, 8-4 RRAC) and Thursday at Wiley College (11-6, 6-4 RRAC).
The Lions next home game is a week from Saturday, Jan. 26, when Bacone College visits at 7:30pm.
All eight of the team’s final home games will be broadcast in HD by SAGU Sports Live. Visit their Facebook fan page for a video tribute to the Lions unbeaten streak on the road.
The most recent home game, Jan. 5 versus St. Thomas (11-4, 6-3 RRAC) is available to watch now. Go to the SAGU website home page and click on the Watch SAGU TV button, then go to SPORTS.
NAIA Coaches Top 25 Poll
Rank Team (State) Record Points
1 Columbia (Mo) (11) 17-0 281
2 Pikeville (Ky) 17-1 271
3 Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) 18-1 256
4 William Carey (Miss) 15-2 254
5 Oklahoma Baptist 15-3 252
6 Lee Univ (Tenn) 15-1 232
7 Westmont College (Cal) 14-3 222
8 Cal State San Marcos 15-4 209
8 Lindsey Wilson (Ky) 16-2 209
10 John Brown (Ark) 15-3 188
11 Evangel Univ (Mo) 13-4 187
12 Montana State-Northern 16-3 181
13 Xavier (La) 15-3 173
14 Cumberlands (Ky) 15-3 168
15 Bethel (Tenn) 17-2 166
16 Hope International (Cal) 17-1 145
17 SAGU (Tex) 14-3 142
18 Emmanuel College (Ga) 16-2 121
19 Westminster (Ut) 14-4 120
20 Rogers State (Ok) 13-5 119
21 Faulkner Univ (Ala) 16-3 82
22 Philander Smith (Ark) 12-4 78
23 Univ of Science & Arts (Ok) 8-4 77
24 Texas College 13-4 76
25 MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan) 14-5 74
Others Receiving Votes: Arizona Christian 60; Concordia (Cal) 34; Texas Wesleyan 31; Southern-New Orleans (La) 28; Oklahoma City 18; Culver-Stockton (Mo) 13; Shawnee State (Oh) 9; LSU Shreveport (La) 7; Mid-Continent (Ky) 3.
Columbia College received all 11 first place by the eleven balloters.
The next poll will be released on Jan. 22, 2013 from www.naia.org