SFA's Harris and Parker named to Southland Conference All-Academic teams

SFA's Harris and Parker named to Southland Conference All-Academic teams
Source: SFA Athletics

From SFA Athletics

The accolades continue to come in for two of the top stars for the Lumberjack basketball programs.

Already recognized as one of the best players in the Southland Conference, Stephen F. Austin men's basketball sophomore added another accolade to his 2017-18 trophy case Wednesday afternoon when the Ellenwood, Ga., product earned a spot on the Southland Conference All-Academic First Team.

One of six players who were named to the First Team, Harris was the only underclassman to appear on either the All-Academic First or Second Team following a splendid second season in purple and white. In the classroom, Harris carries a 3.18 GPA in sports business but it was his on-court prowess which helped the 'Jacks return to the NCAA Tournament for the fourth time in the past five seasons.

Pushing his game to another level following a freshman season in which he served as the 'Jacks' sixth man, Harris took over as one of SFA's primary offensive threats from the get-go in 2017-18. At 14.5 points per game, Harris' scoring average was the second-best among the 'Jacks' ranks and the 10th highest in the Southland Conference. Of the top ten scorers in the 13-team league, Harris was one of only three underclassmen on that list.

From long distance, Harris was particularly deadly as evident by his downtown accuracy rate of 42.6-percent (58-of-136) which was the second-highest mark in the Southland. The sophomore averaged 1.8 triples per tilt, an average helped by his career-best eight as part of a career-high 31-point outing in the 'Jacks' non-conference home victory over Rice on Dec. 10, 2017.

The eight three-pointer Harris drilled in that tilt represented the third-most in a single game in SFA history. Additionally, Harris earned a pair of selections as the Southland Conference Player of the Week during the 2017-18 campaign, posted four double-doubles and turned in the best single-game field goal percentage mark in the Southland Conference by going 10-of-11 (90.9-percent) from the field in SFA's non-conference victory at Louisiana Tech.

With the help of Harris, the 'Jacks racked up a 28-7 record during the 2017-18 campaign. Those 28 wins represent the fifth-highest single-season total in SFA history and under the direction of second-year head coach Kyle Keller the 'Jacks were once against the Southland Conference's representative in the NCAA Tournament.

Drawing a 14-seed, the 'Jacks were placed in the east region of the bracket and took on third-seeded and 14th-ranked Texas Tech at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, in the opening round of the big dance.

The all-academic teams are voted on by the head coaches, sports information directors and academic advisors from each Southland Conference university. Student-athletes must possess a 3.0 cumulative GPA, have completed one full academic year at the nominating institution and participated in at least 50 percent of the team's competition to qualify for the all-academic squad.

2017-18 Southland Conference Men's Basketball All-Academic Teams
First Team
Name | University | Class | Hometown | GPA | Major
Jordan Howard | Central Arkansas | Sr. | Chandler, Ariz. | 3.71 | Digital Filmmaking
Kareem South | Texas A&M-Corpus Christi | Jr. | Toronto, Ontario, Canada | 3.53 | Biomedical Science
Kevon Harris | Stephen F. Austin | So. | Ellenwood, Ga. | 3.18 | Sports Business
Eddy Polanco | Southeastern Louisiana | Sr. | Bronx, N.Y. | 3.62 | International Business
Jaren Lewis | Abilene Christian | Jr. | Orlando, Fla. | 3.29 | Business Management

Second Team
Sam Burmeister | Incarnate Word | Gr. | San Antonio, Texas | 3.97 | Business Administration
Braxton Bonds | Houston Baptist | Jr. | Nashville, Tenn. | 3.52 | Interdisciplinary Studies
Mathieu Kamba | Central Arkansas | Sr. | Calgary, Alberta, Canada | 3.14 | Finance
Hayden Howell | Abilene Christian | Jr. | Midwest City, Okla. | 3.87 | Composite Interdisciplinary
Lafayette Rutledge | Nicholls | Sr. | Gautier, Miss. | 3.38 | Interdisciplinary Studies

Accolades continue to pile up for Stevi Parker on the heels of a successful senior season which saw her put forth a career-best campaign on the hardwood. The latest honor comes in the forth of a Southland Conference All-Academic First Team selection, per a release from the conference office on Thursday afternoon. Parker's strong commitment to exemplifying being a student-athlete saw her become one of just ten athletes named to the All-Academic teams.

A native of Bixby, Oklahoma, Parker appeared in and started all 32 games for SFA, earning First Team All-Conference honors after averaging 12.8 points and 9.5 rebounds per game as the Ladyjacks went 25-7 on the season. She achieved a pair of notable career milestones this season, breaking into the 1000-point plateau for her career and later cracking SFA's top ten list for career rebounds. Her performance in the 2018 Southland Conference Tournament also led to her being named to the All-Tournament Team for the second straight season.

Parker was a major component of the 32nd 20-win season in program history during the 2017-18 campaign. Her 10 double-doubles and conference-leading rebounding helped SFA earn the 26th postseason tournament appearance in program history, a first-round berth in the WNIT. 

Having already finished her undergraduate studies, Parker was named to the All-Academic team for her performance in non-degree graduate studies. To be eligible for the award, nominees must possess a 3.0 cumulative GPA or higher. Nominees were selected based upon votes collected from the league's head coaches, SIDs and an academic/compliance staff member from each institution.

A full rundown of the Southland women's basketball All-Academic teams is listed below.

2017-18 Southland Women's Basketball All-Academic First Team

Name School Class GPA Major
Cassidy Barrios*2 Nicholls Jr. 3.70 Business Management
Amanda Johnson*% Houston Baptist Sr. 4.00 Biology
Chastadie Barrs* Lamar Jr. 3.51 Corporate Communication
Moe Kinard* Lamar Jr. 3.57 Criminal Justice
Stevi Parker* Stephen F. Austin Gr. 3.00 Non-Degree Grad Studies

2017-18 Southland Women's Basketball All-Academic Second Team

Name School Class GPA Major
Kiandra Bowers2 Lamar Gr. 3.75 English
Brittany Mbamalu2 Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Sr. 3.66 M.A. Public Administration
Sierra Allen Abilene Christian Gr. 3.88 School Psychology
Taylin Underwood Southeastern Louisiana Sr. 3.28 Accounting
Breanna Wright Abilene Christian So. 3.50 English – Teaching

Automatic Selections:
* - First Team All-Conference
% - CoSIDA Academic All-District (Second Team)
2 - Two-time All-Academic Selection