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MEN’S BASKETBALL: Cantafio promoted to Cardinals’ coaching staff

Lamar men’s basketball director of operations Joey Cantafio has been promoted to full-time assistant coach.

Head coach Tic Price announced the promotion Saturday and added that Cleveland State staffer Thomas Strine has been hired as director of operations. The moves completes a staff that had been missing an assistant since April, when associate head coach Bobby Kummer joined Mercer’s staff.

Cantafio has been part of the Cardinals’ program the past two seasons and came to Beaumont from Tulane, where he handled all video needs for the Green Wave. He was assistant coach and junior varsity head coach at Arlington (Virginia) Bishop O’Connell, a program that produced 12 future Division I players.

“I’ve had the honor and privilege of watching Joey work for the past couple of years,” Price said in a news release. “When you’re the director of basketball operations you have a ton of responsibilities thrown your way. As I watched him I became more impressed with how he took care of his business. He is one of those individuals who always comes in early and stays late to get the job done. When it came time to replace Bobby Kummer — who came to Lamar when the program was down — I wanted someone who I knew, who was loyal to Lamar University and someone who knew me.”

Strine was director of operations at American University for three years before joining Cleveland State. He started his career at Marion (Indiana) High School as an assistant and entered the college ranks at Concordia University-Ann Arbor.

“After promoting Joey, I wanted someone in the operations position that we didn’t have to train,” Price said. “Tommy is very experienced in the operations position. He worked with a friend of mine, Kim Lewis at the University of Richmond. After the interview process, Tommy simply stood out over everyone else.”

About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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