Price adds size, scoring punch to LU hoops squad
BEAUMONT — Two prep standouts and a junior college transfer have signed National Letters of Intent to play basketball and continue their education at Lamar, announced head coach Tic Price Wednesday morning.
The April signing class consists of combo guard Lincoln Davis (Pittsburgh, Pa./South Plains Junior College), Josh Nzeakor (Mesquite, Texas) and Boaz Williams (Houston, Texas).
The three-member class adds size and scoring punch to the Cardinals lineup, while at the same time brings a winning attitude to the program. Davis played on a top-25 junior college team, while Williams guided his prep squad to a 32-win season, and Nzeakor led Mesquite High School to an 18-win campaign this past season.
“The signing class helps us plug some much needed holes,” said head coach Tic Price. “They are still very young, but this is a very talented class of individuals. We want versatile players in our lineup and each one of these guys can play multiple positions.
“I give a lot of credit to my coaching staff for going out and identifying players who have a will to win. These are guys who are used to winning at a very high level, and they bring that mindset with them to Beaumont. I believe these guy will help Lamar reach new heights on the court,” added Price.
A 6-9, 215-pound, post player from Mesquite, Texas, Nzeakor comes to Beaumont after averaging nearly a double-double per game as a senior. A first-team all-district selection, Nzeakor proved his ability to fill up a stat sheet by scoring a career-high 31 points and pulling down a career-high 17 rebounds in a game during his senior year. He scored 31 points twice during his final prep season on his way to averaging 18 points and eight rebounds per game.
Nzeakor stood out in the M24 All-Star game earlier this month in Dallas. The Mesquite High School star scored 23 points, pulled down 14 rebounds and dished out four assists during the contest. Nzeakor already has a familiarity with the Lamar program having served as a teammate alongside current LU point guard Kevin Booze.
“I really believe Josh has the ability to be one of the best post players in our league in a couple of years once he learns the college game, and picks up the speed of it,” said Price. “He has a huge upside, and I believe he is going to be a force in this league. I really think our fans are going to enjoy watching him on the court once he adjusts to the college game. This young man has tons of potential, and we’re excited about him coming to Lamar.”
A 6-7 wing from Houston’s Victory Prep High School, Williams was considered the top rated unsigned senior in the greater Houston area according to RCSSports.com. He guided his prep squad to a 32-10 (.762) overall record and a berth in the state semifinals. He scored a season-high 35 points during a senior campaign that saw him average 19 points, seven rebounds and four assists per game.
Following the season, Williams was ranked as a top-30 player in the state of Texas, and a top-10 ranking in the city of Houston by TexasBoysBasketball.com. He also earned all-area recognition and was named to the All-Vype Private School team.
“The thing we like about Boaz is that he has the ability to come in and play either the three or the four right away,” said Price. “He is a very athletic player who can shoot the ball, or beat you by putting it on the floor and driving to the paint. Because of how he plays, we really think he will present some matchup problems for our opponents.”
Davis guided South Plains to a 29-7 (.805) overall record this past season and a spot in the NJCAA Championship game. Davis went the junior college route after signing with Fairfield University out of high school. The 6-3, 175-pound combo guard started 12 games for the Stags during his rookie season.
Davis has a 43-inch vertical which allows him to play much bigger than his 6-3 frame. He has the ability to make plays above the rim at both ends of the floor.
“Lincoln is a freak of nature at the point guard position,” said Price. “This guy plays above the rim at both ends of the floor. I think he is going to provide our fans with some highlights, and fun moments due to his jumping ability. The best way to describe this guy is, he’s a winner – he does all the little things on the court to help you win. He guided his junior college team to the national championship game.”
Lamar’s latest additions only strengthens a very deep 2014-15 signing class that includes forward Dorian Chatman (Port Arthur, Texas), guard Nick Garth (Houston, Texas), forward Terrance Hubby (Arlington, Texas) and center Christian Kennedy (Warner Robbins, Ga.)
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