Nov. 19, 2011
Stephen F. Austin at Texas Tech
Sunday, Nov. 19, 2011 • 2:00 p.m. (CST)
United Spirit Arena (15,000) • Lubbock, Texas
Radio: None • TV: FSN Southwest Plus • Online: espn3.com
GAME TIME: The Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks will get their second of three difficult road tests on Sunday afternoon when they take on the Texas Tech Red Raiders at United Spirit Arena in Lubbock. The ‘Jacks are coming off a 66-61 loss at San Diego on Monday and will face the Red Raiders as the its final test before six days away from the court for the Thanksgiving break. SFA will not be at home again until November 30th, with a road game at UTEP still on tap for next Saturday.
LAST GAME: SFA got career highs from Antonio Bostic (22 pts) and Darius Gardner (16 pts), but hit just 11 of 21 free throws and surrendered a late 11-0 run to San Diego as the Toreros erased a seven-point SFA lead with less than six minutes remaining in the game to eek out a 66-61 win at Jenny Craig Pavilion. The Lumberjacks were hampered by a 10 minute drought in the first half in which they went from the 11:37 mark to the 1:07 mark of the half without a field goal.
THE RED RAIDERS: Under first-year head coach Billy Gillispie, the Red Raiders are off to a 2-0 start after home wins over Troy and most recently North Texas. Texas Tech hit 23 of 25 from the foul line on Wednesday and withstood a furious comeback by North Texas to pick up its second win of the young season. This will be the third of three games at home to open up the season, as well as a pair of exhibition games. Ty Nurse had 29 points in the opener vs Troy and added 15 against the Mean Green, while big man Robert Lewandowski is averaging 12.5 points and 5.5 rebounds through two games that includes a 17-point outing on Wednesday.
vs. TEXAS TECH: SFA is 0-5 all-time, against the Red Raiders, with each meeting coming during Danny Kaspar’s tenure as head coach. The teams have met in each of the past four seasons, three of which have been in Lubbock. Each of the last three times SFA has gone to Lubbock the Red Raiders have pulled off double-digit victories, barely escaping with a two-point win in Nacogdoches in 2009-10.
COVERAGE: Sunday’s game will be aired live on FSN Southwest Plus, and streamed via ESPN 3. The FSN Southwest Plus affilation includes MYTX in the Tyler/Longview area.
UP NEXT: The ‘Jacks will have nearly a week away from the game court before traveling to El Paso, Texas, to take on UTEP for the second consecutive season.
KASPAR GETS 200: Danny Kaspar closed out the 2010-11 season just one win shy of 200 for his career at Stephen F. Austin, but it did not take him long to register that win this year as the ‘Jacks got him the win in front of a home crowd with a season-opening, 84-43, win on Friday vs Centenary. He is already third all-time at SFA in head coaching wins, trailing only Marshall Brown (345) and Bob Shelton (245).
BOUNCING BACK: SFA was 7-2 last season in games following a loss. Over the last three seasons, the ’Jacks are 19-0 in home games following defeats. The last time SFA dropped two straight games with the second loss coming at home was the 2006-07 season, when the ’Jacks fell at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, then lost at home to UTSA in the regular-season finale.
BOSTIC CAREER HIGH: Antonio Bostic never bucketed more than 15 points in a game during his sophomore year, but has found his way into the starting lineup for both of the Lumberjacks’ first two games of this season and has been a force in each. Bostic set a new career high with 16 points in the opener vs Centenary and then blew right by that with a 22-point effort at San Diego. He has hit 62.5 percent of his shots from the floor in those games and is 6 for 7 from the foul line.
AGAINST THE BIG XII: SFA is 2-9 against teams from the Big XII in 11 years under head coach Danny Kaspar. The Lumberjacks knocked off Baylor, 79-57, in Waco during the 2003-04 season and defeated Oklahoma, 66-62, on the road in 2007-08. With games against Texas Tech and Texas A&M in 2011-12, this season marks the fourth time in the last five years for SFA to play two Big XII opponents.
SCOTT NEARING 1K: After a junior season where he scored 13.3 points per game and hit a school-record 60 percent of his shots from teh floor, Jereal Scott has positioned himself well for a senior season that could leave his name sprinkled throughout the SFA record book. He opened the season on Friday with an 18-point, six-rebound outing against Centenary and now two games into his senior year needs just 135 more points to become just the eighth Lumberjack with 1,000 points in a career in the Division I era.
THE GARDNER DID IT: Not known for his scoring output, sophomore point guard Darius Gardner was key in helping the ‘Jacks nearly pull out a road win at San Diego earlier in the week. Gardner only scored three points in the opener vs Centenary, but canned a pair of threes and pumped in 16 points to go with four assists against the Toreros. It was a career best for Gardner, bettering a 15-point outing last year in a win at Sam Houston State.
NOT THE NORM: Jerel Scott was a hard man to slow down last season, scoring in double figures 47 of 60 games over the last two years, including 22 of 28 games played last season with SFA going 3-3 in the six games where he didn’t total at least 10 points. The ‘Jacks could have used his production at San Diego on Monday as the Lumberjack big man was held to just five points on 2 of 7 shooting from the floor.
START ME UP: The Lumberjacks saw a pair of freshmen get action in Friday’s season-opener vs Centenary in guard Micah Delph and forward Jacob Parker; however, it was the 6-6 Parker that, despite a stat line that did not sparkle, turned the most heads. Parker found himself on the floor at the opening tip, making him the first Lumberjack freshman since Marcus Clark in 2002 to be in the starting lineup for the season opener.
TURNOVERS, TURNOVERS: SFA forced 33 turnovers in Friday’s season-opening win over Centenary, which was the most since the ‘Jacks forced 33 turnovers vs Schreiner College on Nov. 21, 2006.
NOT NEEDING THE DISTANCE: The Lumberjacks scored 84 points and won by a 41-point margin in its season opener, but did it without the benefit of the long ball. SFA was just 3-for-15 in shooting from 3-point range, which makes Friday’s game the biggest margin of victory for SFA with no more than three 3-point makes since the 99-54 win over Schreiner College in 2006.
JUCO CONNECTION: The ‘Jacks have managed to develop a recruiting pipeline to two successful junior colleges in recent years, and those recruiting dividends are evident once again on this year’s roster. Joe Bright joins former Lumberjacks Denzel Barnes and Benson Akpan as transfers from Howard College since 2007-08, while Taylor Smith is the fifth ‘Jack from McLennan CC since 2007, joining Jordan Glynn, Eric Bell, Eric Bell and Orren Tims in that category.
SEASON OPENERS: SFA is now 8-4 in season-opening games under head coach Danny Kaspar. The Lumberjacks have compiled a 13-13 record in season openers as a Division I program (since 1986-87 season). Under Kaspar, the Lumberjacks are 7-0 when opening the season at home and 12-6 in home season openers overall as a Division I program. SFA is 1-4 under Kaspar when opening on the road and is just 1-7, in all, as a Division I program when playing the season opener on the road. The Lumberjacks’ only season-opening road win in the last 23 seasons was an 82-72 verdict at Tulsa to start the 2005-06 campaign.
HOME OPENER: SFA knocked off Centenary, 84-43, in the 2011-12 home opener. Head coach Danny Kaspar’s teams are a perfect 12-0 in home openers at SFA. The last time an SFA team failed to win its home opener was a 67-55 loss to Texas A&M in 1998.
SOUTHLAND SUCCESS: SFA is 6-3 in its last three Southland Tournament appearances. The ’Jacks have been in the championship game in two of the last three years, winning it in 2009 and losing last season.
HOME INVASION: SFA’s 55-40 loss to Sam Houston State in last year’s home finale marked the first time since 2006-07 for SFA to lose at least three home games in a single campaign. The ’Jacks went 10-5 at home in 2006-07.
LOW POINT: The 40 points SFA scored against Sam Houston State in last season’s match-up with the Bearkats set a Johnson Coliseum record for fewest points scored by the ’Jacks. The previous record was 41 in a 52-41 loss to Southeastern Louisiana in February of 1995.
LOW-BALLED: The 46 points A&M-Corpus Christi put up in its win over SFA last season tied for the fewest points by a Lumberjack opponent in an SFA loss over the last 11 seasons. In 11 years under Danny Kaspar, the ’Jacks have held the opposition below 50 points 52 times and lost only five times.
BEAST AGAINST THE EAST: In four-plus years of divisional play in the Southland Conference, SFA has only lost one home game to a team from the Southland East Division. That was a 67-57 decision against Northwestern State in 2006-07, the first year of divisional action. Since then, the ’Jacks have reeled off 15 straight home wins against the East. SFA is 18-1 at home against East Division teams, and has a 30-8 overall mark against teams in that division.
DIVIDE AND CONQUER: Since the Southland Conference began divisional play in 2006-07, SFA has won three of a possible six division championships. The ’Jacks won the Southland West in 2008 and won the East Division title in 2009 and 2010.
SOUTHLAND OPENERS: In 11 seasons under Danny Kaspar, SFA is 5-6 in Southland Conference openers. The ’Jacks have dropped three of their last four league-opening games and have lost five straight times when opening Southland play on the road. SFA is 2-5 under Kaspar in Southland openers away from home. The last time a Lumberjack team won a league-opening road game was a 2002-03 verdict at former Southland member ULM.
HOME DEFENSE: SFA held its opponents to 50 points or fewer in nine of 16 games at home last season, and allowed just 51.6 points per game at home in 2010-11. The ‘Jacks opened up 2011-12 on a good note as well, holding Centenary to just 43 points on Friday.
DEFENSE FIRST: The Lumberjacks led the nation in scoring defense at 56.7 points per game allowed in 2010-11. SFA has finished the year ranked among the top 10 in scoring defense in each of the last four seasons, including No. 2 rankings in 2008 and 2009. The best defensive season by a Lumberjack team in the Division I era was 2008-09, when SFA held the opposition to 56.1 points per game.
HOME NON-CONFERENCE: After Friday’s win over Centenary and putting together an 8-0 pre-conference record at home last year, SFA has now won 29 of its last 30 home, non-conference games, dating to the 2006-07 season. The only loss during that stretch is a two-point defeat against Texas Tech in 2009-10. The Lumberjacks are 58-4, overall, in home, non-conference games in 12 seasons under head coach Danny Kaspar.
BELOW FIFTY: SFA held 10 opponents below 50 points last season, and started off this year by holding Centenary to just 43 points. In 12 seasons under Danny Kaspar the Lumberjacks have held an opponent to 50 points or fewer on 53 occasions, losing just five of those games.
SAFE AT HOME: In 10-plus seasons under head coach Danny Kaspar, the Lumberjacks have compiled a 128-32 (.800) record in the William R. Johnson Coliseum. SFA is 324-123 (.725) all-time in the Coliseum. SFA has recorded six straight seasons and eight campaigns in nine years with double-digit wins at home.
CLASSIC RESULTS: SFA is 4-0 in the Etech Lumberjack Classic after hosting the event for the second straight year in 2010-11. The ’Jacks are 10-0, all-time, in home, regular-season tournaments. SFA went 4-0 in two years of hosting the Tall Pines Classic in 1975 and 1976, and the ’Jacks picked up two wins in the Stephen F. Austin Tournament in 1963. SFA will host the third annual Etech Lumberjack Classic in December when it hosts Alabama State and Florida International.
TOURNAMENT TEAM: Over the last three seasons, SFA is 9-1 in five regular-season, tournament-format events. The Lumberjacks won two games at the Drake Hy-Vee Classic in 2008-09 and split a pair of contests at the Arkansas Jim Thorpe Classic later that season. Last year, SFA swept two games each in the Etech Lumberjack Classic and the St. Mary’s Shamrock Classic, then picked up two wins in the 2010 Etech Classic. The ‘Jacks have five games scheduled over two tournaments this season: the Etech Lumberjack Classic in Nacogdoches, and the Global Hoops Showcase in Eugene, Ore.