Lions host Northwood tonight
Despite a two-day delay, Texas A&M University-Commerce will get its shot at payback for its only loss of the season when it takes on Northwood Wednesday at The Field House tonight (Dec. 11) at 7 PM. The Knights snapped the Lions' season-opening, eight-game win streak on Dec. 3 with a narrow 75-73 win in Cedar Hill. Wednesday's rematch was originally scheduled for Monday in Commerce, but was postponed due to the recent winter weather in North Texas.
Lions on the Web
Fans unable to make it to the Field House on tonight can still follow the action as KETR 88.9 FM will carry the game live with Charlie Chitwood on the call. The game will also be streamed online at KETR.org. Live stats are available at LionAthletics.com while Twitter followers can get in-game updates through the A&M-Commerce Men's Basketball Twitter account @Lion_MBB.
Scouting the Knights
2013-14: 2-3 overall, 0-0 Sooner Athletic Conference (NAIA)
Last Three Games: L vs. St. Thomas-Houston (85-76), L vs. York (Neb.) (104-103), W vs. A&M-Commerce (75-73)
Head Coach: Ray Wilkerson. Second season at Northwood (6-25, .167)
Key Knight Players:
· #3 B.J. Dale (Sr., G): 19.6 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 43.6 FG%, 36.8 3FG%, 66.7 FT%, 13 ast., 4 blk., 6 stl.
· #5 Everett Pleasant (So., F): 22.4 ppg, 14.0 rpg, 51.2 FG%, 35.3 3FG%, 52.6 FT%, 6 ast., 11 blk., 4 stl.
· #24 Jerrick Massenburge (So., F): 14.0 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 52.4 FG%, 44.4 3FG%, 81.5 FT%, 2 ast., 8 blk., 5 stl.
· #2 Chase Franklin (Fr., G): 7.0 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 38.5 FG%, 27.3 3FG%, 41.7 FT%, 7 ast., 1 blk., 6 stl.
· #23 Jordan Johnson (So., G): 7.4 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 51.9 FG%, 40.9 FT%, 14 ast., 10 stl.
Synopsis: Northwood is in its second season of basketball, starting the program in the 2012-13 season. The Knights are 2-3 on the year but have been an explosive offensive team, averaging 89.6 points per game with a pair of 100+ point games. Northwood has shot 43.2 percent from the floor on the season, including 30.9 percent from three-point range, while shooting 60.6 percent as a team from the free throw line.
Wednesday's matchup will be the second in the history of the series between the teams with the first coming just nine days before. The Knights pulled off a 75-73 upset of the Lions in Cedar Hill on a night which saw A&M-Commerce go just 1-for-19 from beyond the three-point line. The Lions held a brief lead late in the game, but was eventually done in by its toughest shooting night of the season (29.9 percent), despite putting four players in double figures, led by Kenny Brown's 17 points.
The Week That Was
The weather got the best of everyone over the past week, postponing a pair of games for A&M-Commerce, beginning with the postponement of the game vs Dallas Baptist and then Monday's postponement. The eight day layoff will be followed by a flurry of action, starting with Wednesday's game. The Lions will then get its second look of the year at Dallas Baptist on Monday, Dec. 16 before finishing off its season series with Henderson State two days later (Dec. 18). That will be followed by a 15 day layoff with no more games until the Lone Star Conference opener on Jan. 4 against Midwestern State.
A Start For the Record Book
A&M-Commerce saw its 8-0 start to the season come to an end on Dec. 3, but the Lions still found themselves among some elite company. The start tied for the second-best winning streak to start a season, pulling even with the 1953-54 team that advanced to the NAIA quarterfinals.
Brown Leads The Way
Senior forward Kenny Brown had his best offensive showing of the season in the Lions' loss at Northwood on Dec. 3, pumping in a team-high 17 points. It was a season high for Brown, and the third time he's reached double figures this year.
Out Of The Ordinary
It was a rough night in the Lions' last game, one that is against the norm from what A&M-Commerce managed in its first eight games of the season. The Lions shot just 1-for-19 from beyond the arc in its loss to Northwood, and just 29.9 percent from the field for the game. Both of those are the low water marks of the season for a team which only shot below 40 percent once in its first eight games and had made at least 10 three-point buckets in half of those games.
Balanced Scoring Keys Lion Surge
One of the hallmarks of the 2013-14 A&M-Commerce season has been the balanced scoring for head coach Sam Walker's Lions. Through the first eight games of the year, four different Lions have been the team's high scorer, with junior LaDon Carnegie topping the list four times. Carnegie leads A&M-Commerce by averaging 15.6 points per game, just ahead of Tyrie Wooten's 11.5 points and Devondrick Price's 11.1 points per game. Kameron Price is pumping in 10.8 per game, giving the Lions four players averaging double digits through nine games after having just a pair of double digit scorer's one year ago.
A&M-Commerce Lions at Northwood Knights
Wednesday, Dec. 11 · 7 p.m.
The Field House · Commerce, Texas
Records: A&M-Commerce (8-1); Northwood (2-3)
Twitter Updates: @Lion_MBB