, Port Arthur, Texas

December 14, 2013

Lamar seeks first home win in 50 weeks

Bob West
The Port Arthur News

BEAUMONT — While most Southeast Texas sports fans will be watching NFL games Sunday afternoon, Pat Knight’s Lamar University basketball team will be trying to win a game at the Montagne Center for the first time in 50 weeks.

    The 1-7 Cardinals, whose latest losing streak is up to four games, host Tennessee Tech at 2 p.m. Tech, a team LU routed 85-65 two years ago in the only meeting between the two schools, comes in with a 5-6 mark.

    Lamar will be in action for the first time since a 95-89 Montagne Center loss to Arkansas State on Nov. 30. Knight’s club has dropped 13 consecutive home games since edging LIU-Brooklyn, 81-80 on Dec. 29, 2012. It was the Cardinals only home win last season.

    Lamar’s lone victory this season was 75-66 over Savannah State in Salt Lake City. Since then, the Cardinals have been blown out by Utah (84-57) and absorbed single digit setbacks against Grand Canyon (78-69), Texas-Pan American (66-61) and Arkansas State.

    Nimrod Hilliard, a 6-0 JC transfer, continues to lead the Cardinals in scoring (14.9 ppg) and assists (5.4). Amos Wilson, a  6-5 senior (12.5 ppg) who is the only Texan on the LU roster, and 6-5 JC transfer Donovan Ross (11.3 ppg) also average in double figures. Ross is the team’s leading rebounder at 5.9.

    Lamar opponents are shooting 49.7 percent from the field and 37.4 beyond the arc to 43.5 and 32.6 for the Cardinals. LU has made only 29 treys, compared to 58 for its foes. The Cardinals are being outrebounded 38.1 to 30.9.

    Following the game against Tennessee Tech, Lamar hits the road for games at LIU Brooklyn on Wednesday, Canisius next Saturday and at Colorado State Dec. 28. The Cardinals don’t play at home again until facing Southland Conference foe Nicholls on Jan. 9. — Bob West