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    MBB Game Notes: at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
    Hal Bateman enters Saturday's game at TAMUCC ranked 12th in the nation with 7.0 assists per game.
    Hal Bateman enters Saturday's game at TAMUCC ranked 12th in the nation with 7.0 assists per game.

    Dec. 27, 2012

    Game Notes In PDF Format

    SFA (9-1, 0-0 SLC) at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (1-8, 0-0 SLC)
    Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012 • 3:00 p.m. (CT)
    American Bank Center (8,100) • Corpus Christi, Texas
    Radio: Q107.7 FM • Video: • Live Stats: None

    • With a 9-1 pre-conference record under its belt, Stephen F. Austin can now turn its attention to the Southland Conference, which is just what it will do when it travels south to take on Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Saturday at the American Bank Center.  

    The Last Meeting
    Texas A&M Corpus Christi41
    February 25, 2012
    Nacogdoches, Texas
    SFA Blasts Islanders
    Taylor Smith and Jonathan King each finished with double-doubles and Stephen F. Austin put four players in double figures in running away from Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, 74-41, on Saturday at William R. Johnson Coliseum.

    • SFA is currently enjoying its best start since the 2007-08 season, a year in which it won its first Southland Conference title. SFA will enter league play with a top-40 RPI, tops in the SLC, and as the only one-loss team in the Southland.

    • Just 48 hours after it’s upset of Oklahoma, SFA shook off a slow start and got a double-double from Taylor Smith in a 60-38 win over Grambling on Thursday at William R. Johnson Coliseum.
    The `Jacks (9-1) held their third opponent of the season under 40 points and held the Tigers (0-9) without a field goal for a stretch of more than 14 minutes spanning both halves. Smith finished with 20 points and 12 rebounds in just 28 minutes for his second double-double of the season. Desmond Haymon was the only other Lumberjack in double figures with 10 points, while nine `Jacks cracked the scoring column. Antonio Bostic was next with eight points and Rex Baxter, Jr. had seven. Hal Bateman hit just one of six shots from the floor, but still dished out six assists and pulled down five rebounds. 

    • SFA will kick off 2013 at home when it hosts Lamar at William R. Johnson Coliseum on January 3.  The game will be televised on Comcast Sports Net Houston and will be the third of five scheduled TV games for the ‘Jacks this year.

    • The Lumberjacks will be looking to extend their streak of 42 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 eight games of this 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.

    • The Sooners outrebounded the ‘Jacks, 38-37, on in SFA’s 56-55 win to mark the first time in 19 games the ‘Jacks had been beaten on the glass.

    Series Notes
    The ‘Jacks have played five games in Corpus Christi since the Islanders became a member of the Southland Conference, dropping the first contest in the 2006-07 season before winning each of the last four times. Typically those games have been closer than the trips to Nacogdoches, with SFA holding just a nine-point margin of victory since 2008 in Corpus Christi, and a 17-point margin in four games in Nacogdoches.

    SITTIN’ ON 20: The ‘Jacks have six 20-win campaigns since becoming a Division I program in 1988. All six of those 20-win seasons have come under Danny Kaspar.

    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 10 games of 2012-13 to extend its school-record streak of sub-70 defensive performances to 42. 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.

    OKLHAOMA BREAKDOWN: SFA’s win at Oklahoma snapped a 36-game home win streak over non-conference opponents for the Sooners. Oddly enough, the last win at the Lloyd Noble Center by a Sooner non-conference opponent was in 2007 when the ‘Jacks escaped Norman with a 66-62 win.

    SOUTHLAND OPENERS: In Danny Kaspar’s first 12 seasons at SFA, the ‘Jacks are 6-6 in Southland Conference openers. Before last season’s conference-opening win at Texas State, the ’Jacks had dropped three of their last four league-opening games and had lost five straight times when opening Southland play on the road. SFA is 3-5 under Kaspar in Southland openers away from home.

    HOME NON-CONFERENCE: SFA has won 38 of its last 40 home, non-conference games, dating to the 2006-07 season. Each of those two losses have been by two points apiece, coming to Florida International in 2011-12 and Texas Tech in 2009-10. The Lumberjacks are now 66-5, overall, in home, non-conference games in 13 seasons under head coach Danny Kaspar.

    TUNE ME UP: SFA has won each of the last seven years in its final game before the start of Southland Conference play. The last time SFA lost its final league tune-up was in 2005-06 when it fell 81-75 at North Texas.

    ‘JACKS INTO MID-MAJOR TOP 25: SFA got an early Christmas present on Monday, breaking into the Mid Major Top 25 for the first time this season. The ‘Jacks checked in at No. 25 and are the only Southland Conference school to make an appearance in the poll this year. The last time SFA was in the poll was the 2008-09 season, reaching as high as No. 11.

    PARKER’S HOMECOMING: Jacob Parker had a career afternoon in SFA’s win at Tulsa, scoring a career-high 16 points and pulling down four rebounds. A native of Bixby, Okla., which is just outside of Tulsa, Parker hit seven of his 10 shots from the field, including a pair of three-point buckets.

    LOW-BALLED: SFA held Texas A&M-Corpus Christi to 46 points in an Islander win over in 2011 that tied for the fewest points by a Lumberjack opponent in an SFA loss over the last 12 seasons. In 12 years under Danny Kaspar, the ’Jacks have held the opposition below 50 points 59 times and lost only five times.

    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 started off no different as SFA is leading the nation in scoring defense again, allowing just 48.9 points per game through its first 10 contests, holding eight of its opponents below 60 points.

    AMONG NATION’S BEST: As a team the ‘Jacks are right at the top of the country in scoring defense, but the ‘Jacks also have a pair of individuals who are near the top of the country’s statistical rankings as well. Senior Taylor Smith currently sports a .657 field goal percentage, which is third in the nation, while Hal Bateman’s seven assists per game ranks 12th in the country.

    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 17 of 36 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 46.6 points per game through five home games this season.

    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. 4 rebounder in Taylor Smith (7.7 rpg) and is tops in the league in rebound margin by a wide gap, pulling down 7.4 rebounds per contest more than its opponent, just one year after leading the Southland in rebound margin (+7.1 rpg). The next closest team in the Southland in rebound margin is Oral Roberts, pulling in just 4.7 more rebounds per contest than its opponent.

    HAL DO YOU DO?: Senior point guard Hal Bateman dished out a career-high 11 assists in SFA’s season-opening win over Howard Payne, the most for a Lumberjack since Eric Bell had 11 dimes in a road win at Northern Illinois during the 2007-08 season. Three games later he doled out another 10, making him the first ‘Jack since Marcus Clark in 2004-05 to have multiple games in the same season with 10+ assists. In addition, he ranks 12th in the nation and leads the Southland Conference with 7.0 assists per game. The school record at SFA is 6.3 set by Winston Harrison in 1981-82.

    DIALING LONG DISTANCE: The ‘Jacks did plenty of damage from the perimiter in its season-opening win over Howard Payne, hitting 10 of its 17 shots from beyond the arc. Five of the threes came from junior transfer Deshaunt Walker, and the 10 triples were the most since the ‘Jacks hit 10 in a win over Chicago State in 2010

    BLOCK PARTY: Taylor Smith averaged 1.31 blocks pe rgame in less than 20 minutes of play as a junior, but this year that number is expected to skyrocket, and through four games he has not disappointed. Smith, who was a two-time league defensive player of the year at McLennan CC before coming to SFA, has 28 blocks (2.8 bpg) in the first 10 games of the season. Only two SFA players in the Division I era have blocked more shots in a single season than Smith’s 42 a year ago and only one Lumberjack has ever led the league in blocks -- Tim Holloway in 1989-90. Smith’s 2.8 blocks per game currently ranks second in the league to TAMUCC’s Nate Maxey (3.0 bpg).

    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 getting victories after taking a halftime lead into the locker room in each of its first seven wins before overcoming a four-point halftime deficit to rally and knock off Oklahoma on Tuesday.  

    SAFE AT HOME: In 12-plus seasons under head coach Danny Kaspar, the Lumberjacks have compiled a 142-35 (.798) record in the William R. Johnson Coliseum. SFA is 338-126 (.726) all-time in the Coliseum. SFA has recorded seven straight seasons and nine campaigns in last 10 years with double-digit wins at home. The ‘Jacks are currently 6-0 at home this season.

    IT’S BEEN A WHILE: Not since the 1957-58 season had the ‘Jacks pulled off what they managed to pull off in its season opener vs Howard Payne. SFA held HPU to just 30 points on the night, the least amount scored by an SFA opponent since Sam Houston State put up 30 in a 40-30 loss to the ‘Jacks in the 1957-58 season. Against the Yellow Jackets, SFA allowed just 15 shots to fall from the floor, none from beyond the arc and HPU missed its only free throw of the game.   

    KASPAR KOUNTER: Danny Kaspar picked up his 200th win at SFA in last year’s season opener vs Centenary currently stands third all-time at SFA in head coaching wins with 228, trailing only Marshall Brown (345) and Bob Shelton (245). Kaspar also has 447 career wins between his time at SFA and Incarnate Word, second among active Southland Conference to Northwestern State’s Mike McConathy.