SAGU comes up 'short' down the stretch

Stats that normally assure victories were overlooked

WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The warmth of the afterglow from the men’s basketball season is still being felt, with post-season honors and reviews capping a blessed season for Southwestern Assemblies of God University.

By finishing 33-5, the Lions stirring run to the NAIA national championship game won hearts, fans and the respect of countless observers.

Still, the title game loss to the winningest team in the history of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), Kentucky’s Georgetown College, was both fulfilling and unsatisfying.

It left Lion Nation hungry for more. An ascending team would love to feast from the top spot next spring.

Georgetown (28-8, 14-6 in conference games) was third in the 11-team Mid-South Conference behind no. 2 ranked Lindsey Wilson College (32-5, 16-4 in MSC) and the University of Pikeville (26-7, 15-5).

All of them played in the City of Fountains, with the Lions eliminating Wilson, 80-64, and LSU-Shreveport edging the Pike, 91-87.

A day after rolling past Lindsey Wilson, the Lions' 4-0 magical run came to an end in the final, 88-62.

Georgetown went 0-2 against Wilson and 2-3 versus U-Pike.

There were some amazing oddities that transpired in the game. When analyzed, they reveal much about the outcome was an aberration. How many did you notice?

Offensive Rebounds

One of the Top 10 offensive rebounding teams in the nation, SAGU, despite being doubled in total rebounds, held a 20-15 advantage on the offensive glass.

How many times this season did the Lions, who averaged 15.6 per game (third nationally), collect 20 offensive boards? Eight. How many times did they lose in those games? One, to Georgetown.

In comparison, how often did the Lions surrender more offensive caroms than they did? Again, just eight times in 38 contests. Even when opponents collected more offensive boards, only once did the Lions lose. Once.

Near Mistake-Free Basketball

SAGU committed a season-low five turnovers in the game, none in the second half. How many times did they make less than 10 in a game? Twice. Did they lose those games? Once, the championship game.

Ironically, while the Lions turnover ratio (turnovers committed vs. number of opponents’ turnovers forced) is among the nation’s best, Georgetown ranked 101st of 102 teams. In the title game the Purple & Gold squeezed the Tigers into 24 turnovers, a whopping +19.

How many games did SAGU make fewer turnovers than their opponent? 23 times. Did the Lions lose any of those games? One, against Georgetown.

In fact, SAGU drove the opposition into 24 or more turnovers on nine occasions, leading to victory every time except one. The title game.

Getting More Shots

The Lions punch the time clock and work vigorously for offensive boards. Combined with a defense that ranks ninth in steals and fourth in field goal percentage, they often finish with more shot attempts than their foes. More shots leads to more points.

During the season the Lions fired over 70 shots in 11 games, and they unloaded 80+ another five times. Against the Tigers they held their largest ratio in shots attempted to the opponents’ tries, a whopping 84-55 (+29).

Only once did the Purple Pride lose when they controlled this area. In the final.

Though often shorter than their foes, SAGU was outrebounded just 13 times in 38 games. It resulted in four of their five defeats.

Battle for the Boards

In terms of getting dominated on the glass, only twice did the Lions allow an opponent to have a +10 advantage in boards. Martin Methodist College (Tenn) at the NAIA nationals (+17) and Georgetown, who held an abnormal (+30) lion’s share in rebounds.

It was due to the Tigers superior size combined with ice-cold shooting by SAGU as well as the way the game was called. Officials allowed physical play, which didn’t favor the Lions. In their defense, striped shirts were fair in foul totals.

The Red River Athletic Conference calls more fouls, by far, than any league in the nation. Nine of the NAIA’s Top 20 teams who draw the most citations are from the RRAC.

Statistics Summary

Huge advantages in shots, offensive rebounds and turnovers most always spell a victory; when combined, often a large one, were incongruent on Tuesday.

While they spoke very favorably about the Lions’ effort, they could not offset SAGU’s chilly shooting.

The Lions connected on just 29% of their 84 shots while the Tigers made good on 58% of their 55 tries. During the bright lights of the championship, the teams were unseasonably cold/hot.

Added to their control of the backboards, Georgetown owned a 20-6 margin in free throws made.

In the end the Tigers, enjoying their 22nd straight trip to the tournament, pulled away from a 47-40 lead with twelve minutes to play to earn the crown over the young and talented new kids on the block.

Georgetown has played in 32 NAIA nationals, making it to the finals just five times. No wonder six-foot-nine Martavious Marc did a series of backflips at midcourt when the final buzzer sounded.

The most difficult tournament in all of college basketball, five games in seven days, is such a demanding test. The Tigers annually make the effort for another shot for the title. To the victors go the spoils.

SAGU has an impressive core of very capable hoopsters set to return, making an encore worth the work.

It was a finish that didn’t go as planned in a season that went further than many fans ever thought possible.

A coronation for the Jungle Kings awaits.

Contact:  Mark “Link” Warde, SAGU Sports Information Director, or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at 469-658-2847.

Special Thanks:  Contributing Research by SAGU senior, Brenden Kowalski
 

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Lions close semester at home on Monday

Lions close semester at home on Monday

Dec 16, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Arlington Baptist (4-5) takes on No. 3 SAGU (6-1) Patriots' ability to limit outside shooters will be put to the test WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The first semester comes to an end...

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No. 3 Lions shake off rust in 74-49 triumph

No. 3 Lions shake off rust in 74-49 triumph

Dec 11, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

SAGU depth, defense wears down Tigers Feemster, Walter fuel offense; Mitchell blocks seven shots Box Score (at bottom of story) Current SAC Standings:   http://www.soonerathle...

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Lions rise to #3 in NAIA Coaches Poll

Lions rise to #3 in NAIA Coaches Poll

Dec 11, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

SAGU is tied with Pikeville College in third Columbia College (8-0), Georgetown College (9-1) are No. 1, No. 2 (Entire Poll posted below) WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The first...

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Bostwick talks about being picked #2 in the SAC

Bostwick talks about being picked #2 in the SAC

Dec 08, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Lions Head Coach discusses fans and home games SAGU begins conference season the first week in January WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The start of Southwestern Assemblies of God Universit...

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SAGU has local road game on Tuesday

Dec 08, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Catch the Lions, Lady Lions in S.E. Dallas Study Break for fans; SAGU has home game on Dec. 16 WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  While its finals week at Southwestern Assemblies of God Unive...

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SAC Coaches pick Lions to finish second

SAC Coaches pick Lions to finish second

Dec 05, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Oklahoma Baptist voted as the team beat SAGU hosts OBU on Jan. 4 in broadcast biggie WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The head coaches in the Sooner Athletic Conference picked Oklahoma Bapt...

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River Pilots steer past Lions, 84-75

River Pilots steer past Lions, 84-75

Nov 26, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

SAGU outscored 12-4 in final five minutes Conference season begin on Dec. 5 vs OKC Stars Box Score and Play By Play (links below) Next Coaches Top 25 Poll:  December 10 SH...

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No. 5 Lions take on #2 LSU-Shreveport tonight

No. 5 Lions take on #2 LSU-Shreveport tonight

Nov 25, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Fans can follow the game's play-by-play on-line Friendly rivals meet at 7pm on the Red River at The Dock SHREVEPORT, Louisiana  --  The Southwestern Assemblies of God Universi...

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SAGU goes to 5-0, top Crusaders, 89-71

SAGU goes to 5-0, top Crusaders, 89-71

Nov 20, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Erskine pours in 23, Feemster has second double-double Next up for Lions; road trip to No. 2 LSU-Shreveport Current SAC Standings:   http://www.soonerathletic.org/sport/0/4.php ...

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Follow Lions roar tonight on Twitter

Follow Lions roar tonight on Twitter

Nov 19, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

SAGU teams play at 6pm/8pm in Richardson Games will be rematches from November 5th doubleheader WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The Southwestern Assemblies of God University men’s an...

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Lions cage Tigers, 82-67; whip 13 three-pointers

Lions cage Tigers, 82-67; whip 13 three-pointers

Nov 15, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

SAGU off to 4-0 start for third straight year Gentry, Guidry, Mills, Feemster reach double-digits Box Score (link below) SAC Standings:   http://www.soonerathletic.org/sport/0/4...

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SAGU entertains Paul Quinn tonight at 7:30pm

SAGU entertains Paul Quinn tonight at 7:30pm

Nov 14, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Men's hoopsters ranked No. 3 in NCCAA pre-season WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  Ranked number 5 in the NAIA's Pre-Season Top 25 Coaches Poll, the Southwestern Assemblies of God Univer...

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Lions top No. 2 LSU-Shreveport, 83-72

Lions top No. 2 LSU-Shreveport, 83-72

Nov 12, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Erskine, defense propels No. 5 SAGU against Pilots O'Neill, Davis, Starks provide essential lift for Team Purp WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  Sparked by a solid defensive effort, the ...

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#5 Lions host #2 LSU-Shreveport tonight at 7pm

#5 Lions host #2 LSU-Shreveport tonight at 7pm

Nov 12, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Teams almost met in last year's NAIA championship game Preview of Players to Watch WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  Tonight’s clash between No. 2 ranked LSU-Shreveport and No. 5 r...

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SAGU tops McPherson in OT, 92-82

SAGU tops McPherson in OT, 92-82

Nov 11, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Gentry, Mills, Feemster lead Lions to 2-0 start On Deck: No. 2 ranked LSU-Shreveport on Tuesday Box Score  and SAC Standings (links below) WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  Dem...

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Gentry's infectious, "all out" energy drives Lions

Gentry's infectious, "all out" energy drives Lions

Nov 07, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Wood-surfing typifies desire of senior leader NEXT: SAGU plays host to McPherson College, Sat., 5:00pm SAC Standings:  http://www.soonerathletic.org/sport/0/4.php  WAXAHACHIE...

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Snowstorm of threes lead Lions to 95-62 win

Nov 06, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

All ten players score, seven drain treys in SAGU debut Point Parade: Gentry 21, Mills 17, O'Neill 15, Feemster 13 WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  After a near-packed Sheaffer Center cr...

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Hoops season tips off to threat of snow

Hoops season tips off to threat of snow

Nov 05, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

SAGU is ranked #5 in NAIA Coaches Poll Lions play host to Dallas Christian on Tuesday night LiveStats link:   http://www.dakstats.com/WebSync/Pages/Webcasts.aspx?association=10 ...

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SAGU men's basketball roster announced

SAGU men's basketball roster announced

Nov 03, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Three starters will return, along with a deep cast Lions open the season at home on Tuesday at 8:00pm WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  In his first year as Head Coach at Southwestern Assemb...

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Men's Basketball adds two games

Oct 23, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

Lions to play home/away against Ecclesia College SAGU schedule now complete with 30 dates WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The Southwestern Assemblies of God University men's baske...

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Lions announce 28-game hoops itinerary

Lions announce 28-game hoops itinerary

Oct 03, 2013 - Men's Basketball News

SAGU schedule has early national match-up Final roster decisions forthcoming; three starters return WAXAHACHIE, Texas  --  The Southwestern Assemblies of God University men’...

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