NACOGDOCHES, Texas (Press Release)- Stephen F. Austin will host Lamar on Saturday in a highly anticipated match as the top four teams in the Southland Conference are all neck and neck with each other. Lamar is tied, 10-2, with Central Arkansas after their win against Sam Houston on Thursday. SFA is tied in second, 9-2, with Abilene Christian after SFA's win over Nicholls, and ACU's loss to Central Arkansas on Wednesday night.
Saturday will be a special game for the Ladyjacks as they sponsor the Play for Kay cancer fund during their annual Pink Out game. The Kay Yow Cancer Fund was born from the vision of the organization's namesake Kay Yow, former North Carolina State University head women's basketball coach. Kay Yow was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987, and passed away on January 24, 2009, after facing her third bout with the disease. Before her death, she joined forces with the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) and The V Foundation for Cancer Research to form the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, a charitable organization committed to being a part of finding an answer in the fight against women's cancers. Stephen F. Austin is one of 230 universities support the Kay Yow Cancer Fund through their February Pink Out games. The Ladyjacks will be honoring cancer survivors and their loved ones during Saturday's game. For more information, visit kayyow.com.
SFA and Lamar have met 63 times throughout their program history, and SFA leads the all-time series 49-13. The Ladyjacks are 19-4 at home against the Cardinals. The first game occurred back in 1972 with an SFA win, 58-48. The caliber of these two teams as been almost identical as all the game in the last ten years, except for 2013, have been decided by ten points or less. The last match up between these two teams was in Beaumont, Texas, and won by a 14 point fourth quarter by senior Brentney Branch.
Branch was also the star of Wednesday night's clash with Nicholls. She joined the ranks of the Ladyjack 1000-point club after registering a 26-point game against the Colonels. Six of her shots were from beyond the arc, tying her own second most three-pointer in a game school record. She now totals 1,007 points on her career at SFA.
Last time out: Sophomore Kia Fisker had a terrific night as well, totaling 13 points, a career-high, and three rebounds. Senior Taylor Ross had her tenth 20-point game of the season, posting 25 points, nine rebounds, and five assists. Redshirt junior Stevi Parker led the Ladyjacks on the boards with nine rebounds, and eight points. The Ladyjacks outrebounded the Colonels 39-26 and forced 17 turnovers. The first three quarters were a mail-biter as Nicholls lead the game for almost 20 minutes before SFA could compose themselves and pull off with the win. The game was tied a total of six times, and the lead changed six times. But SFA dug in their heels and came away with an 82-77 win.
Scouting Lamar: The Cardinals won out over Sam Houston earlier in the week with an 84-51 win. Lamar moved to 10-2 in Conference, which ties Central Arkansas for first. LU is undefeated 13-0 at home after defeating Sam Houston. The Cardinals forced 27 turnovers against SHSU and turned them into 47 points. LU lead by as many as 46 points early in the fourth quarter before emptying the bench. Senior Kiandra Bowers registered her 13th double-double of the season, and 20th of her career, finishing with a game-high 17 points and 10 rebounds. Redshirt sophomore Moe Kinard had 15 points, while Chastadie Barrs almost came away with a triple-double, completing 11 points, nine assists, and seven steals. The Cardinals are on a five game win streak, with their last loss back in January against Nicholls, 78-67.
Next Up: SFA will play at home again for the second match up of the season against Abilene Christian. The two teams will clash on Feb. 16, and tip-off is set for 5:30 p.m. The game will be live streamed on ESPN3 and the Watch ESPN app.