Cards turn around quickly after defeat
WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: SE LOUISIANA (3-11) AT LAMAR (9-3)
- What: 2 p.m. Saturday
- Where: Montagne Center, Beaumont
- Webcast/Radio: ESPN3.com/KLVI-AM 560
- Southland records: Lamar 2-0, SELA 1-2
- Series record: SELA leads 22-19; last meeting, SELA won 73-66 in Hammond, La., on Jan. 14, 2016
- About the game: The promotion is Daddy-Daughter Day (two general-admission tickets for $6 each). … Lamar has won eight straight, and a ninth would make the current streak Lamar’s longest since a 14-game run in the 1990-91 season, when the Cardinals reached the Elite Eight. The Cards still lead the nation in steals (14.5 per game), turnover margin (plus-10.25) and turnovers forced (25.33). … SELA broke an eight-game skid with an 87-71 win at Houston Baptist on Thursday behind Taylin Underwood’s 45 points, one shy of the school record. She averages 17.9 points per game. — I.C. Murrell
Lamar could have defeated New Orleans in so many ways in Thursday’s men’s basketball game.
A few more made free throws would have given Lamar the win. Just one basket in the first 6 minutes would have made a difference. A three-point make in the final seconds of overtime would have put the pressure on the Privateers.
None of those happened, and sophomore guard Nick Garth took the Cardinals’ loss hard.
“We let one slip away,” Garth said, burying his head in his jersey during the postgame conference following Lamar’s 66-62 defeat. “We had the opportunities; we just couldn’t convert them. We’ve got to look forward to the next one on Saturday.”
Lamar’s home game Saturday against Southeastern Louisiana (9-7, 2-1 Southland) now serves as a bounce-back attempt for a team that had previously won four in a row and had been 6-0 at the Montagne Center this season. Tipoff is at approximately 4:30 p.m., and the game will be webcast on ESPN3.com and air on KLVI-AM 560.
It’s a quick turnaround for Lamar (9-6, 1-1), which had played within 48 hours of a previous game once this season (Liberty and Arlington Baptist on Dec. 19 and 21, respectively).
A win will help the Cardinals leapfrog at least two teams currently tied for third in the Southland Conference standings, as SELA is deadlocked with Houston Baptist, McNeese State and Central Arkansas. Houston Baptist plays at McNeese on Saturday.
New Orleans (8-6, 3-0) leads the conference with Nicholls State (9-6, 2-0) second. Lamar is tied with defending champion Stephen F. Austin (6-8, 1-1) for seventh.
But on Thursday night, the Cardinals were left to rue their missed opportunities.
They made 19 of 30 free throws and 5 of 22 three-point attempts.
“I think our kids did a good job,” Lamar coach Tic Price. “We came up short. We didn’t execute in crunch time. It really shouldn’t have been an overtime game, but New Orleans, you’ve got to give them a lot of credit. But we’ve got to make our free throws; that’s what it comes down to.”
They were also cold from the floor overall, making only 19 of 50.
Thursday’s game was the first time Weisbrod took on the team he played with straight out of Nederland High. He transferred after his freshman season to Lamar State College Port Arthur to be closer to family.
“I was amped for it, just like anybody else,” said Weisbrod, whose son was born in April 2015. “But after the first couple of possessions, it’s like any game. You see some familiar faces, but it’s like any other game after that point.”
Near the end of the postgame conference, Price talked about the recent death of 11-year-old Mahlon Luke of Nederland, a big Lamar fan who became friends with the players as he was battling leukemia. A moment of silence was held for Mahlon prior to tipoff.
“It’s just heartbreaking to lose a kid so sweet,” Price said. “But he was a warrior to the end. If we can take that type of fight from him, I think we’ll finish the season pretty strong.”
The Lions care coming off an 81-74 loss at Houston Baptist on Thursday, but they lead the Southland in scoring at 79.9 points per game. Moses Greenwood, a 6-foot-7 sophomore, had 22 points, shooting 8 for 9 from the field, for the Lions.
SELA has won five of the past six against Lamar.
I.C. Murrell: 721-2435. Twitter: @ICMurrellPANews