SFA Opens Four-Game Homestand With ACU

Senior Deshaunt Walker and SFA open homestand with Abilene Christian Thursday night.

Jan. 29, 2014

SFA Game NotesGet Acrobat Reader

Game 21 - SFA (RV) (16-2, 7-0 SLC) vs. Abilene Christian (7-13, 1-5 SLC)
Date/Time: Thursday, Jan. 29 • 8:00 p.m. (CT)
Site: William R. Johnson Coliseum (7,203)

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Game 22 - SFA (RV) (18-2, 7-0 SLC) vs. Incarnate Word (16-3, 4-2 SLC)
Date/Time: Saturday, Feb. 1 • 6:00 p.m. (CT)
Site: William R. Johnson Coliseum (7,203)

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Team Information
Stephen F. Austin
Head Coach: Brad Underwood (Kansas State, 1986)
Career Record: 18-2 (1st season), Record at SFA: Same 

Abilene Christian
Head Coach: Joe Golding (Abilene Christian, 1999)
Career Record: 31-43 (3rd season), Record at ACU: Same 

Incarnate Word
Head Coach: Ken Burmeister (St. Mary's, 1970)
Career Record: 271-198 (17th season), Record at UIW: 143-73 (8th season) 

• The Stephen F. Austin men's basketball team has opened defense of their 2013 Southland Conference title and 2014 calendar year on a seven-game win streak over Lamar, Sam Houston State, Houston Baptist, Texas A&M - Corpus Christi, Northwestern State, Oral Roberts and Central Arkansas. With the 7-0 start and other results around the league, the Lumberjacks sit atop the SLC standings and are the only unblemished team in conference play.

• SFA, currently riding a 15-game winning streak, will play its first home games since SHSU (Jan. 4) in Week 13. The `Jacks will play Abilene Christian on Thursday, Jan. 30, and Incarnate Word on Saturday, Feb. 1. The two games are the first between SFA and the opponents as conference foes, while the UIW game also marks the first meeting on the hardwood in either program's history. Both ACU and UIW are ineligible for the postseason while in the transition from Division II. 

• SFA will play the ACU for the first time since the 1983-84 season. The Wildcats enter Thursday's game 7-13 on the season under third-year head coach Joe Golding. Sophomore guard Parker Wentz, who has played 155 of a possible 160 minutes in the team's last four games, leads ACU.  Wentz, averaging 10.8 PPG, has shot 42.5 percent from the field (17-of-40), including 35.0 percent from 3-point range (7-of-20) over the last four games.

• UIW, is currently on a two-game win streak under 18-year head coach Ken Burmeister. The Cardinals are led by junior Denzel Livingston's 19.3 PPG on the season. Livingston is also the league's reigning player of the week after helping UIW to wins over Sam Houston State and Lamar.

The Last Time Out
• Junior Jacob Parker recorded his seventh double-double of the season and senior Deshaunt Walker added 19 points off the bench to push the Stephen F. Austin men's basketball team over Central Arkansas 66-49 Saturday afternoon inside Farris Center. 

• SFA will continue its four-game homestand in Week 14, hosting Nicholls and McNeese State. 

SFA VS. THE OPPONENT: The Lumberjacks are 14-14 (.500) all-time against Abilene Christian and have never played Incarnate Word. SFA has won six-straight meetings with ACU, with the last coming in 1983-84 season. The last loss to Wildcats came in a 54-48 decision in 1980-81. Both ACU and UIW are in the transition from Division II and are ineligible for postseason.

FIRST-YEAR SUCCESS: Already with 18 wins at the helm of the Lumberjacks, head coach Brad Underwood is the program's all-time winningest head coach in their first year at SFA. With the 74-58 victory at Northwestern State (Jan. 16), Underwood passed Glen Rose (1948) and John O. Stephens (1952), who both recorded 15 wins back in their respective first seasons.

VOTE OF CONFIDENCE: After 11 weeks without a vote, SFA received one vote in the USA Today Coaches Poll released on Jan. 20. It is the first time this season and second in the last two years in which the `Jacks received votes in the poll. SFA received votes in both the AP Top 25 and USA Today Coaches Poll last season for the first time since getting votes in both the AP and Coaches Polls during its 2007-08 SLC title season. The `Jacks also received their first AP vote last season on Feb. 25, it's first vote in the AP Top 25 since the 2007-08 season as well.

ROAD WARRIORS: SFA not only leads the nation with its eight-game road win streak, but the Lumberjacks also lead all Division I basketball universities with 10 road wins. on the season.

RPI: Except for one week this season, SFA's RIP has ranked in the top 100 in the country. The highest RPI mark for the Lumberjacks this season came back on Dec. 9, when SFA ranked 87, its only sub-90 mark. The RPI's for the `Jacks entering Week 13 is 92.

WALKUP NAMED SLC POW: Sophomore guard Thomas Walkup was named the Southland Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week, the league office announced after playing a pivotal role in keeping the Lumberjacks unbeaten in league play. Walkup recorded a career-high 27 points, the margin of SFA's 77-50 victory at Houston Baptist, finishing 11-of-13 from the field and a perfect 5-of-5 from the free throw line Thursday night. The native of Pasadena, Texas (Deer Park H.S.), then followed with the first double-double of his career, with 21 points and 10 rebounds, in a 80-70 victory at Texas A&M - Corpus Christi on Saturday. Walkup finished 7-of-13 from the floor with two made three-pointers and 5-of-6 free throws along with his 10 boards.

SOUTHLAND OPENERS: SFA's 85-65 win over Lamar marked its third-straight Southland Conference opening victory. SFA, 1-0 in league openers and in league home openers under first-year head coach Brad Underwood, were 7-6 in openers under Danny Kaspar. The `Jacks were also 4-1 under Kaspar in Southland openers at home and 3-5 in league road openers.

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 checks in at No. 7 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 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 seasons of existence. The `Jacks also rank ninth in the SB Nation Mid-Major Madness Power 15 Poll

WALKER NAMED SLC POW: Senior guard Deshaunt Walker was 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. Parker recorded double-doubles in four of Stephen F. Austin's first seven games. The native of Bixby, Okla., has sense added three more in conference play, recording his fifth in a 28-point, 11-rebound performance against Sam Houston State (Jan. 4), sixth double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds at Northwestern State (Jan. 16) and seventh in a 21-point, 11-board showing at Central Arkansas (Jan. 25). The native of Bixby, Okla., is currently averaging 15.5 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. Parker ranks seventh in the SLC in scoring and fifth in rebounds.

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 holds the second longest active home winning streak in the country at 26 games, behind only No. 16/18 Duke. SFA, 8-0 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 18 games under first-year head coach Brad Underwood, the Lumberjacks have compiled a 159-35 (.820) record in the William R. Johnson Coliseum. SFA is 355-126 (.738) all-time in the Coliseum. SFA has recorded eight-straight seasons and 11 campaigns in the 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 Lumberjacks enter Week 13 leading the nation with their eight-game road win streak.
• SFA, despite not playing at home since Jan. 4, are second nationally behind No. 16/17 Duke with a 26-game home winning streak dating back to the 2011-12 season.
• The `Jacks are on a 15-game win streak ranks fifth in the nation.
• SFA currently ranks eighth in the nation with a 5.3 turnover margin.
• Haymon's 36 points against CSU Northridge (Dec. 30) marks the second time this season a `Jack has scored 30 points or more. Parker recorded 31 points in a overtime win at Marshall (Nov. 21).
• 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. ACU: Tied 14-14
Series vs. UIW: 0-0, first-ever meeting
Last 5 Meetings with ORU
Season (H/A), W/L, Score
1983-84 (H), W, 67-62
1983-84 (A), W, 81-67
1982-83 (A), W, 62-55
1982-83 (H), W, 69-47
1981-82 (H), W, 80-62

Last meeting with ORU - (2012-13 Season - Feb. 9, 2013, Nacogdoches, Texas)
Limited information available. SFA won 67-62 (1983-1984).

Last 5 Meetings with UIW
Season (H/A), W/L, Score

Last meeting with UIW - (First-ever meeting - Nov. 1, 2014, Nacogdoches, Texas)

Series Notes
• Thursday's game against Abilene Christian will be 25th meeting between SFA and the Wildcats. The `Jacks have won six-straight meetings with ACU.
• Saturday's game against Incarnate Word will represent the first meeting between the two schools on the hardwood in either program's history.



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