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    MBB: vs Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
    A win on Saturday would give SFA a perfect 15-0 home record in 2012-13
    A win on Saturday would give SFA a perfect 15-0 home record in 2012-13

    March 8, 2013

    Game Notes In PDF Format

    SFA (25-3, 15-2 SLC) vs Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (6-22, 6-11 SLC)
    Saturday, March 9, 2013 • 6:00 p.m. (CT)
    William R. Johnson Coliseum (7,203) • Nacogdoches, Texas
    Radio: Q107.7 FM • Video: • Live Stats:

    • Stephen F. Austin clinched no worse than a share of its third Southland Conference title on Thursday with a win over Sam Houston State, but can claim the title outright on Saturday in its home finale vs Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

    The Last Meeting
    Texas A&M Corpus Christi56
    December 29, 2012
    Corpus Christi, Texas
    Jacks Open Up League Play With Win At Islanders
    The Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks got their second straight double-double from Taylor Smith and led wire-to-wire in taking a 67-56 win at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at the American Bank Center on Saturday in the conference opener for both teams.

    • SFA’s win on Thursday clinched the No. 1 overall seed for the ‘Jacks in next week’s Southland Conference Tournament to be held in Katy, Texas. The ‘Jacks will receive two byes, and will need just a semifinal win on Friday at 5:00 p.m. to move into the tournament championship.

    • Saturday's game will serve as Senior Night for SFA's four-member senior class of Hal Bateman, Antonio Bostic, Joe Bright and Taylor Smith.

    • Desmond Haymon had 17 points and Antoino Bostic registered his second career double-double as the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks pulled away from Sam Houston State in the second half to take a 57-42 win and claim no worse than a share of its third Southland Conference title on Thursday at William R. Johnson Coliseum. Haymon and Bostic were the only Lumberjacks to reach double figures on the night, with 16 of Haymon’s 17 points coming in the second half. He hit all eight of his foul shots and had a three-pointer, while Bostic tied a career high with 10 rebounds to go with his 14 points. 

    • SFA will be the No. 1 overall seed in the Southland Conference Tournament as is locked into Friday’s tournament semifinal at 5:00 p.m. at the Leonard E. Merrell Center in Katy, Texas. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3 and a win would put the ‘Jacks in the tournament title game to be aired on ESPN2 on Saturday at 7:00 p.m.

    • The Lumberjacks will be looking to extend their streak of 60 consecutive games of holding opponents under 70 points. SFA went all of 2011-12 without allowing 70 points to an opponent and has done so in the first 28 games of this season.

    • The 'Jacks enter Saturday with a 14-0 home mark, having won 17 games in a row at William R. Johnson Coliseum, a mark tied for sixth best in the country.

    • 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.

    Taylor Smith has become SFA's all-time shot blocker with 126 for his career

    • SFA is 39-8 since the the beginning of the 2012 calendar year.

    • The Lumberjacks enter Saturday's game averaging just 50.2 points allowed per game, the lowest mark in the country. No team in the nation has ended the year allowing an average of less than 50 points per game since the 1992-93 Princeton Tigers.

    Series Notes
    SFA has won four of the last five and 10 of the last 13 overall in the series with the Islanders since TAMUCC joined the league for the 2006-07 season. The ‘Jacks claimed a 33-point win over the Islanders in the last meeting played in Nacogdoches last season.

    PREVIOUS PURPLE CROWNS: SFA is just one win away from claiming its third Southland Conference title, all of which will have come under Danny Kaspar and each in the last six seasons. The Lumberjacks previously claimed titles in both the 2007-08 (26-6, 13-3 SLC) and 2008-09 (24-8, 13-3 SLC) seasons, but this could be be the most dominating run of the three as the ‘Jacks enter the final two games of the regular season with just two losses in its first 16 league games.

    NEVER ENOUGH Ws: With one more win this season, SFA would surpass the 2007-08 squad’s 26 wins as the most for the program since joining Division I for the 1986-97 season. The school record is 31 wins set by the 1971-72 Lumberjacks who went 31-3 and captured the Lone Star Conference championship.

    SFA WITH THE ELITE: SFA dropped just its third game of the season when it fell at Southeastern Louisiana, but still ranks at the top of the country with its 25-3 record. They are joined by only Gonzaga and Duke as teams left in the country with three or less losses.   

    HOME SWEET HOME: SFA is 14-0 at home this season and enters Thursday having won 17 in a row at William R. Johnson Coliseum, a streak that is tied with Middle Tennessee and Virginia for the seventh longest home win streak in the country.

    SMITH NOMINATED FOR HENSON AWARD:  The honors have started to come in for senior big man Taylor Smith as last week he was named as one of 25 finalists for the Lou Henson Award, an honor presented by to the top Mid-Major payer in the country. He is the only Southland player to be named to the list and is joined by other nationally-recognized names such as Murray State’s Isaiah Canaan, Creighton’s Doug McDermott and Saint Mary’s Matthew Dellavadova.

    BOOM BOSTIC IS BACK:  Antonio Bostic had been relatively quiet offensively over SFA’s eight games leading into the BracketBuster matchup at Long beach State, reaching double figures just once in those games after a stretch of hitting for at least 10 points in six of his previous seven outings. That silence came to a screeching halt at Long Beach State when Bostic pumped in 21 points against the 49ers, and has reached double figures in the two games since then. In his last three games he is averaging 14.0 points per game and is hitting .450 from the floor.

    HOME DEFENSE: SFA is known for its defensive prowess, but it is even moreso evident when playing at William R. Johnson Coliseum. SFA has held its opponents to 50 points or fewer in 21 of 42 games at home in the last three seasons, allowing just 51.6 points per game at home in 2010-11 and 53.1 points per game in 2011-12. It is allowing just 46.7 points per game in 14 home games this season.

    SAFE AT HOME: In 12-plus seasons under head coach Danny Kaspar, the Lumberjacks have compiled a 150-35 (.792) record in the William R. Johnson Coliseum. SFA is 346-126 (.840) 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 Sam Houston State pushed the ‘Jacks to 14-0 at home this season, which is the best home mark for SFA since going 15-0 at home in 2003-04. Of those 14 wins, 12 have come by double digits.

    ON THE BIG SCREEN:  SFA’s BracketBusters win at Long Beach State on ESPNU was the first regular season game in SFA’s history to be televised on either ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU. It also gave SFA eighth scheduled TV games this season, which makes this season the most televised season in SFA history, eclipsing the 2008-09 season when SFA was televised seven times in a season in which it went to the NCAA Tournament.

    SUB-SEVENTY: SFA held each of its 32 opponents under 70 points in 2011-12, and has done the same in each of its first 27 games of 2012-13 to extend its school-record streak of sub-70 defensive performances to 60. The last team to score 70 on the ‘Jacks was Northwestern State, when they did so in a 70-65 win over SFA in 2010-11 in Natchitoches, La.

    LEADING THE PACK: With a 25-3 record it is logical to think that the ‘Jacks have played from ahead most of this year, but it is staggering when you break it down. SFA has led at the half of 24 of its 28 games and won 20 games by double digits; however, of 560 minutes played in the second half, SFA has only trailed for just 34:37 of them, which is just 6.1% of all minutes played in the second period.  

    ‘JACKS IN THE RPI: When the latest NCAA RPI report came out on Monday, the Lumberjacks found themselves with the highest RPI of any team in the Southland Conference at No. 63.  SFA is one of two SLC schools to check in on the RPI Top 100, joined by Northwestern State (No. 95) in the Top 100.

    CLAMPING DOWN: The Lumberjacks were at their defensive best on vs Southeastern in the second half of their first meeting, holding the Lions to just 4-for-24 (16 percent) shooting from the field in holding them to just 15 points in the final 20 minutes. Oddly enough, the ‘Jacks seriously put the clamps on the Lions a year ago as well in the second half, holding Southeastern to just 3-for-16 shooting from the field in holding the Lions to just 36 points, marking the first time since 2008 that SFA had held a Southland opponent under the 40-point plateau. It was the lowest point total by a Southland opponent for the `Jacks in the Danny Kaspar era, and the eighth of 11 times since 2007-08 the ‘Jacks have kept an opponent under 40 points.

    RANK AND FILE: SFA got an early Christmas present on Christmas Eve, breaking into the Mid Major Top 25. The ‘Jacks checked in at No. 25 have moved as high as No. 6 in the latest poll released on Monday. The ‘Jacks are the only Southland Conference school to make an appearance in the poll this year, and recently reached its Mid Major Top 25 peak as it did when it received a first-place vote and peaked at No. 6 in the poll during the 2007-08 season.

    SAME ‘OL, SAME ‘OL: In addition to defense, consistency has been the name of the game this season for SFA, and it begins with the starting five. The ‘Jacks opened the season with the starting five of Hal Bateman, Antonio Bostic, Desmond Haymon, Jacob Parker and Taylor Smith and have not varied since the season opener. Entering Thursday’s game, SFA  and Creighton are the only two teams in the country to have used the same starting five in every game.

    CARDINAL RULE: SFA had no issues with downing Lamar in its first meeting this season, blasting the Cardinals by 36 points in a 79-43 win. What was more impressive was the fact that the the 36-point margin of victory was SFA’s largest margin of victory in a conference game since SFA joined the Southland Conference for the 1987-88 season.  Recently the ‘Jacks matched that margin in its 72-36 win over Central Arkansas on Thursday.

    SITTIN’ ON 20: The ‘Jacks picked up their 20th win of the season on when they knocked off Oral Roberts. This season marks the seventh 20-win season for SFA since becoming a Division I program in 1988, all have come under Danny Kaspar.

    TOP OF THE WALL: Taylor Smith has been outstanding as SFA’s last wall of defense this year, and the numbers are showing just that. The senior, who was a two-time league defensive player of the year at McLennan CC before coming to SFA, has 84 blocks (3.0 bpg) in 28 games of the season, demolishing Emanuel Jackson’s 61 blocks in 1999-00 as the season record in the Division I era at SFA. Only one Lumberjack has ever led the league in blocks -- Tim Holloway in 1989-90. Smith’s 3.0 blocks per game currently ranks first in the league and 14th in the nation.

    A DUNK IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS: Typically, Danny Kaspar teams are not known as a high-flying bunch with dunks galore; however, this year’s group has the ‘Jacks singing a different tune. The maestro is senior big man Taylor Smith, who has dunked home 52 of his 183 made shots, a mark which is 28.4 percent of his made shots.

    CHAIRMEN OF THE BOARDS: SFA did not have a single player in the Southland Conference top 10 in rebounding in 2011-12, but this year sports the league’s No. 2 rebounder in Taylor Smith (8.9 rpg) and is tops in the league in rebound margin by a wide gap, pulling down 7.1 rebounds per contest more than its opponent.

    FIRST HALF KNOCKOUT: As the top scoring defense in the country, the Lumberjacks have managed to hold 10 of their 28 opponents to under 20 points in the first half this season, taking a lead into the break 24 times; however, SFA did itself one better at McNeese State, holding the Cowboys to just nine points in the opening 20 minutes en route to a 26-9 halftime lead. The nine points scored was the first time an SFA team has held an opponent to single digits in a half since Central Arkansas scored just seven points in a win in Nacogdoches during the 2008-09 season. That mark is tied for the fourth-lowest first-half total in the country this year.

    TAYLOR MADE: Senior post Taylor Smith just missed his 10th double-double of the year in SFA’s win at Sam Houston State. He has been named the league’s player of the week three times, and currently leads the nation in field-goal percentage (.693) and is tops in the SLC in blocks per game (3.0 bpg), while ranking in the top five in scoring (15.6 ppg) and rebounding (8.9 rpg). But he has been even better in league play, nearly averaging a double-double vs SLC teams with 16.1 points and 9.7 rebounds while shooitng .713. His nine double-doubles on the year are behind only Oral Roberts’ Damen Bell-Holter for tops in the Southland.

    DEFYING LOGIC: It stands to reason to think that a team which both outrebounds and outshoots its opponent has amplified chances to pull out a victory. Such has been the case for this year’s SFA squad, leading the Southland in both field-goal percentage and rebound margin; however, its loss to Northwestern State defied that logic as the ‘Jacks both outshot (41.7% to 36.8%) and outrebounded (43 to 35) the Demons and still fell in defeat. It was just the sixth time in 184 games since the 2007-08 season SFA has outshot and outrebounded an opponent and still been defeated.

    HALF WAY THERE: The ‘Jacks were not at their best when playing from behind in 2011-12, but were exceptional when playing from out in front. That was most evident by the fact that the ‘Jacks went 19-1 a year ago when taking a lead into the half. Conversely, SFA was 1-11 when trailing at the break. This season had followed suit with the ‘Jacks winning each of their first 19 games of the year when leading at the break before it’s loss at Southeastern Louisiana. In that game SFA held a 23-21 lead at the midway point before eventually falling 54-50.

    VOTES OF CONFIDENCE: After two weeks without a vote, the ‘Jacks received a pair of votes in the USA Today Coaches Poll released on February 11. It was the the second time this year SFA has received votes in the poll, and the first year SFA had received votes since getting votes in both the AP and Coaches Polls during its 2007-08 SLC title season. The ‘Jacks also received its first AP vote of the season on Feb. 25, it’s first vote in the AP Top 25 since the 2007-08 season as well.

    DEFENDING THE ARC: A year ago the ‘Jacks allowed opponents to hit 33.3 percent of their shots from behind the arc, a mark which was near the bottom of the SLC. This season things have been drasticsally different. In addition to sporting an 23-2 record after 27 games, SFA is tops in the nation in defending the three-point line, allowing its opponents to hit just 27.3 percent of its threes as the only team in the Southland holding its opponents to less than 30.0 percent shooting from distance.

    KASPAR KOUNTER: Danny Kaspar picked up his 200th win at SFA in last year’s season opener vs Centenary and currently stands third all-time at SFA in head coaching wins with 242, trailing only Marshall Brown (345) and Bob Shelton (245). With at least three games left on the slate, it’s still very possible that Kaspar moves past Brown for second on the all-time list at SFA by season’s end. Also, SFA’s win over McNeese State gave Kaspar his 450th career win between his time at SFA and Incarnate Word, second among active Southland Conference to Northwestern State’s Mike McConathy.

    DEFENSE FIRST: The Lumberjacks finished third in the nation in scoring defense at 54.7 points per game allowed in 2011-12, a new school record. SFA has finished the year ranked among the top 10 in scoring defense in each of the last five seasons, including leading the nation in 2011 with 56.7 points per game and No. 2 rankings in both 2008 and 2009. This year has been no different as SFA is leading the nation in scoring defense again, allowing just 50.6 points per game through its first 27 contests, holding 18 of its opponents below 60 points. No team in the country has managed to average allowing less than 50 points per game since the 1992-93 Princeton Tigers.