SAGU hosts first-ever SAC games on Saturday
MACU teams lead the SAC; men score 99 ppg
Evangels rosters sprinkled with Texans; games aired in HD
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- Playing Mid-America Christian University is not new for the basketball teams from Southwestern Assemblies of God University.
Saturday they face MACU for the first time as fellow members of the Sooner Athletic Conference.
The women’s teams meet in the Sheaffer Center at 3:00pm (CST). Approximately two hours later the men are set for a 5:00pm tipoff.
Plenty of seating will be available as students have yet to return to campus for the next semester.
Both contests are going to be broadcast in high definition by SAGU Sports Live. The pregame show for the women’s game starts at 2:45pm.
Rob Price, the host and play-by-play man, will be joined by color analyst Tim Roberts.
To access the HD video, visit www.sagu.edu and click on the Watch SAGUtv button.
A complete recap of the games will be posted here on Saturday night. It will feature action photos from the game.
Fans from both teams can view and/or purchase from hundreds of action photographs and images from the two games. They will be posted by Sunday.
Shot by Oak Leaf, Texas resident Steve Patterson, they can be seen at: movingpictures.photoreflect.com
MACU’s fan base in Oklahoma City has reason for optimism. For the first time since joining the NAIA both teams are off to 3-0 starts in the SAC.
The Lady Evangels are 9-3 in all games and sit in the SAC catbird seat. Already this season they have enjoyed an eight-game win streak, their best since hooking up with the NAIA.
MACU scores 76 ppg and surrender 67. SAGU (6-5 record) nets 62 ppg and allow 58.
Neither team gets more rebounds than their opponents, though they hold their own.
Both squads average 16 turnovers an outing. MACU, however, coax their enemies into 24, four more than the Purple Pride.
The area that may determine the winner will take place along the three-point arc. Mid-America is stroking 8.3 trifectas per game while SAGU has netted 5.2.
The Lady Lions permit opponents to make just 33% of their shots – the stingiest in the Sooner. MACU is eighth at 38%.
The red-clad visitors have four player scoring in double digits; Ashlee Ferguson 13.6, Adaugo Osuala 11.4, Lauren McKinney 10.5 and Cheyenne Been 10.2.
Been and Ferguson both have 28 treys.
Ferguson and McKinney hail from The Colony and Fort Worth respectively. Four others call the Lone Star State their home.
Senior guard Nia Winston (Garland, Tx / Lakeview Centennial HS ) leads the league in scoring with 17.3 ppg. Jirah Rodriguez (Georgetown, Tx / Georgetown HS ) is next at 8.8.
From downtown, Winston has fired 23 treys. Rodriguez and Taylor Hill (Waxahachie, Tx / Waxahachie HS ) have 13 and 11.
The Pride are led on the boards by freshman Laken Ward (Cleveland, Ark / Wonderview HS ) and senior Shaquita Roberts (San Antonio, Tx / Byron Steele HS ) who are credited with 6.5 and 6.4 rebounds per game.
The Lady Evangels lead the series over the past decade, 4-1. Four of the games were decided by less than ten points.
MACU won the last meeting in 2009, 67-64, in OKC.
The Evangels are 7-2 overall, losing only a pair of game on the road by two points; 97-95 at Bacone College, 111-109 at College of the Ozarks (10-3).
Head Coach Willie Holley is in his 41st season at MACU. His 776 career wins ranks second most in the history of the NAIA.
Mid-America is third in the nation in scoring at 99 points per game. The Lions (8-1 / 1-0 in SAC), who allow 70 ppg, will have their hands full.
The Evangels are powered by the diminutive Semar Farris, a 5’5 junior guard from Ft. Worth. He is accounting for 21 ppg.
Farris has been true on 55% of his shots and, at 55-of-61 (90%) on the free throw line, controlling him will tax the Lions.
Senior forward Angelo Lewis is fourth in the conference at 19.4 ppg.
Another local product, Jarius Wilson (Duncanville, Tx), a 5’11 guard, compliments Farris with 14.7 ppg.
Three other players are also from Texas, including Luke Mergersen (Duncanville) and Josh Smith, who is from nearby Venus (19 miles from Waxahachie).
The Evangels pressure their opponents into 23 turnovers, six more than they commit themselves. It is the best ratio in the league.
SAGU ties their horse up to the post of man-to-man defense. They hold foes to 38% shooting, tops in the SAC.
The Lions ability to grab offensive rebounds, 15.6 per game, combined with nearly 10 threes per contest as well as converting 71% from the charity stripe, make them tough to beat.
Six players are producing double figures with four of them scoring 15 or more.
The teams have played four times in the last 10 seasons, splitting the games. MACU won the last two, 102-98 in 2011 and 77-69 in 2010, both in OKC.
The last time they played in Waxahachie was 2005 when the Lions came away with an 80-71 triumph.