SFA Opens New Year And SLC Play With Lamar

Senior Deshaunt Walker and SFA open SLC play with Lamar Thursday.

Jan. 1, 2014

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Game 14 - SFA (11-2, 0-0 SLC) vs. Lamar (1-11, 0-0 SLC)
Date/Time: Thursday, Jan. 2 • 8:00 p.m. (CT)
Site: William R. Johnson Coliseum (7,203)

Team Information
Stephen F. Austin
Head Coach: Brad Underwood (Kansas State, 1986)
Career Record: 11-2 (1st season), Record at SFA: Same

Head Coach: Pat Knight (Indiana, 1995)
Career Record: 77-112 (7th season), Record at LU: 22-51 (3rd season)

The Last Meeting
February 2, 2013
Beaumont, Texas
SFA Holds Off Cardinals
The Stpehen F. Austin Lumberjacks overcame a sluggish start and got 20 points from Taylor Smith in cruising to a 65-51 win over Lamar on Saturday at the Montagne Center.

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin men's basketball team closed December the same way they began the month, with a win and did not drop a decision in between. SFA (11-2) went a perfect 6-0 across the final month of the 2013 calendar year and will now open 2014 with Southland Conference play. The Lumberjacks, currently riding a eight-game winning streak, continue their homestand with the third of four games with a 8:00 p.m. tip against Lamar Thursday, Jan. 2, inside William R. Johnson Coliseum.

• The `Jacks, who entered the week tied for second in the nation with their 23-game active home winning streak, edged Cal State Northridge in come-from-behind fashion to improve the streak to 24. With the win, SFA pulls back into a tie with No. 9 Duke and Arkansas, trailing only No. 25 Missouri with its 25 consecutive home wins.

• The Cardinals (1-11) come to Nacogdoches on an eight-game losing streak under third-year head coach Pat Knight. LU is coming off a 86-71 loss at Colorado State on Saturday, Dec. 28. The Cardinals currently have four players averaging double figures, led by junior Nimrod Hillard's 15.6 PPG. LU's other double-digit scorers are senior Amos Wilson (11.9 PPG), junior Donovan Ross (10.8 PPG) and sophomore Rhon Mitchell (10.2 PPG).

The Last Time Out 
• Senior guard Desmond Haymon scored a career-high 36 points to help the SFA come from behind and knock off Cal State Northridge 74-67 Monday night inside William R. Johnson Coliseum. With the win, SFA (11-2) extends its current winning streak to eight games and pulls back into a tie for second in the nation with its now 24-game active home winning streak.

• SFA will close its four-game homestand with a 6:00 p.m. tilt against Sam Houston State (Jan. 4), before retaking the road for the first time since Dec. 15 when the `Jacks travel to Houston Baptist (Jan. 9).

SFA VS. THE OPPONENT: The Lumberjacks are 28-24 (.539) all-time against Lamar, which includes a 16-8 (.667) record in Nacogdoches. SFA has won its last two meetings with the Cardinals and four of its past five. The `Jacks have also won four straight against LU in the William R. Johnson Coliseum. SFA's last loss in the series came during the 2012 Southland Conference tournament when the `Jacks dropped a 55-44 decision in the semifinals.

SOUTHLAND OPENERS: Since the turn of the century, also representing all 13 seasons of Danny Kaspar's tenure at SFA, the `Jacks are 7-6 in Southland Conference openers. SFA has won its last two SLC openers and was 4-1 under Kaspar in Southland openers at home. 

HAYMON'S HEROICS: Senior guard Desmond Haymon's 36 points against Cal State Northridge mark the second time a `Jack has scored 30-plus this season and is the first for an SFA player at home since Jereal Scott dropped 30 against Texas College (12/17/11) in the 2011-12 season. It is also the first time a `Jack has scored more than 35 points in a game since 2004. Haymon finished 12-of-17 from the floor, draining four shots from beyond the arc, and 8-of-13 from the charity stripe. Of his 36 points, 30 of those came in the second half. In the second half, the native of Pickens, Miss., shot 10-of-13 from the field, 3-of-6 from three-point range and 7-of-9 from the free throw line.

MID-MAJOR TOP 25: SFA currently check in at No. 16 in the CollegeInsider.com Mid Major Top 25. The `Jacks are and remain to be the only Southland Conference school to make an appearance in the poll this year. The last time SFA was last in the poll was the 2012-13 season, reaching as high as No. 5 prior to the NIT, its highest ranking in the polls' 15 season of existence.

WALKER NAMED SLC POW: Senior guard Deshaunt Walker has been named the Southland Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week, the league office announced after leading the Lumberjacks with 22 points in 22 minutes off the bench in a 87-53 statement road victory at North Texas on Dec. 15 inside the Super Pit. The native from Silver Springs, Md. (Spring Brook H.S.) was an efficient 7-of-9 from the field, including 5-of-7 from beyond the arc, and made all three of his free throws. He finished two points shy of his career-high while also adding three assists and a steal. 

HAYMON NAMED SLC POW: Senior guard Desmond Haymon was named the Southland Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week after helping Stephen F. Austin to a pair of wins and being named the most valuable player of the Etech Lumberjack Classic. Haymon recorded 18 points, with 14 coming in the second half, in a 79-69 win against Towson (Dec. 6). He then followed with a game-high 21 points in win over James Madison (Dec. 7) to keep SFA unblemished at home. 

DOUBLE-DOUBLE FOR PARKER: Junior forward Jacob Parker, who went through both his freshman and sophomore year without scoring a double-double, has flourished under first-year head coach Brad Underwood's new system, recording double-doubles in four of Stephen F. Austin's first seven games. Parker is currently averaging 15.8 points and 7.2 rebounds per game.

PARKER NAMED SLC POW: Junior forward Jacob Parker was named the Southland Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week after recording consecutive double-double performances and helping the Lumberjacks to a 1-1 record in the team's first two games of the First Bank and Trust Company Roundball Showcase. Parker recorded a career-high 31 points and 11 rebounds in SFA's come-from-behind 80-73 victory over Marshall in overtime (Nov. 21). Parker's 31 points marks the first time a `Jack has scored 30 points or more since Jereal Scott put up 30 against Wiley College in 2011. The native from Bixby, Okla., followed up with 19 points and a career-high with 12 boards against East Tennessee State (Nov. 23).

INSIDE WILLIAM R. JOHNSON COLISEUM: Stephen F. Austin currently owns the second longest active home winning streak in the country at 24 games. SFA, 6-0 inside William R. Johnson Coliseum this season, went all of the 2012-13 season without dropping a match at home en route to the Southland Conference regular season title. The last loss for the `Jacks at home came against UT-Arlington (2/15/12) in the 2011-12 season. 

SAFE AT HOME: In 13 seasons under head coach Danny Kaspar and already 13 games under first-year head coach Brad Underwood, the Lumberjacks have compiled a 157-35 (.818) record in the William R. Johnson Coliseum. SFA is 353-126 (.737) all-time in the Coliseum. SFA has recorded eight straight seasons and 11 campaigns in last 12 years with double-digit wins at home after its win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi pushed the `Jacks to 15-0 at home last season, tying the best home mark for SFA since going 15-0 at home in 2003-04. Of those 15 wins, 12 came by double digits.

SFA SPOILS HOME DEBUT FOR KASPAR: Sophomore Thomas Walkup recorded a career-high 14 points and junior Jacob Parker recorded the first double-double of his career, as the Stephen F. Austin men's basketball team knocked off Texas State 64-57 to spoil the debut of former head coach Danny Kaspar Tuesday (Nov. 12) night inside Strahan Coliseum. In his 13 years in Nacogdoches, Kaspar posted a 246-141 (.636) overall record and guided the `Jacks to seven 20-win seasons, three Southland Conference regular-season titles, two NIT appearances and a berth in the 2009 NCAA Championship tournament.

UNDERWOOD WINS DEBUT: Junior Jacob Parker and senior Nikola Gajic both recorded career-highs and the Stephen F. Austin men's basketball team placed three Lumberjacks in double-figures, as head coach Brad Underwood picked up his first win at the helm in a 90-64 victory over UT-Tyler Friday,Nov. 8 inside William R. Johnson Coliseum. The win comes one week after SFA beat Arkansas Tech in its exhibition opener on Nov. 1.

SFA PICKED THIRD/FOURTH IN SLC POLLS: The Stephen F. Austin Lumberjack basketball team was picked third and fourth in the Southland Conference preseason polls conducted by coaches and sports information directors, league officials announced Wednesday morning. SFA, the defending 2012-13 SLC regular season champion, was picked fourth in the coaches' poll and in a two-way tie with Sam Houston State in the SID poll, receiving one first place vote.  

HAYMON, PARKER NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-SLC TEAMS: Senior Desmond Haymon and junior Jacob Parker were each named to the preseason All-Southland Conference teams for the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjack basketball team, conference officials announced on Wednesday. Haymond was SFA's lone representative on the preseason first team, while Parker earned second team recognition.

UNDERWOOD NAMED HEAD COACH: Brad Underwood was named the 11th head coach of the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjack basketball program on April 23, SFA Director of Athletics Robert Hill announced at a press conference Tuesday afternoon.

• The SFA men's basketball team enteres Thursday's game ranked second in the country with a 24-game winning streak dating back to the 2011-12 season.
•Haymon's 36 points agasint CSU Northridge (Dec. 30) marks the second time this season a `Jack has scored 30 points or more. Parker recorded 31 points in aovertime win at Marshall (Nov. 21).
Deshaunt Walker's six made three-pointers at Texas (Nov. 15) is the first for SFA since Kevin Broussard against Wiley College (11/30/2011).
• The Lumberjacks streak of 66 consecutive games of holding an opponent under 70 points ended with their 72-62 loss at Texas (Nov. 15). SFA went all of the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons without allowing 70 points to an opponent.
• SFA is coming off a 27-5 campaign in 2012-13, in which the men set a school record in wins and claimed their third Southland Conference title in program history.  
• SFA made its third-ever appearance in the NIT in 2013 at Stanford and first since 2008 when it fell to UMASS. SFA is 1-4 all-time in postseason tournaments.
Brad Underwood became the 11th head coach in SFA history on April 23, 2013.
• SFA is 1-0 vs. non-Division I programs in the Brad Underwood era.
• Entering the 2013-14 season, Stephen F. Austin and Wisconsin are the only two programs in the nation to be ranked in the top 10 nationally in scoring defense each of the last five seasons. 

Series vs. LU: SFA leads 28-24
Last 5 Meetings
Season (H/A/N), W/L, Score
2012-13 (A), W, 65-51
2012-13 (H), W, 79-43
2011-12 (N), L, 55-44 (2012 SLC Tourney Semifinals)
2011-12 (A), W, 62-52
2010-11 (H), W, 60-55

First Meeting: 1950-51 - LU 61, SFA 60 
Last Meeting: 2012-13 - SFA 65, LU 51 

Last Meeting - (2012-13 Season - Feb. 2, 2013, Beaumont, Texas)
The Stephen F. Austin men's basketball team overcame a sluggish start and got 20 points from senior Taylor Smith in cruising to a 65-51 win over Lamar Saturday, Feb. 2 at the Montagne Center. SFA trailed by as much as nine points in the first half to the Cardinals before holding Lamar scoreless for more than 10 minutes of game time in building as large as a 19-point lead in the second half.

Series Notes
Thursday's game against LU will be the 53rd meeting between SFA and the Cardinals. The `Jacks have won the last two meetings and four of the last five against LU.



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