Nov. 11, 2006
BEAUMONT - Junior Darren Hopkins led five Cardinals in double-figures with 21 points as Lamar University opened the season and the Steve Roccaforte era with a 72-64 win over Texas Southern Saturday night in men's basketball action at the Montagne Center.
Lamar (1-0) hits the road for three straight at the Shelby Metcalf Classic in College Station. The Cardinals will face host and No. 13-ranked Texas A&M Friday at 7 p.m., Saint Louis Saturday at 4:30 p.m. and Louisiana Tech next Sunday at 3 p.m.
The Cardinals, who led 31-22 at halftime, had their lead trimmed to two, 39-37, on a layup by Jacques Jones at 14:09. James Davis hit a jumper for the Cardinals and Jones made another layup for the Tigers at 13:08 to keep the margin at two, 41-39.
Lamar Sanders nailed a three-pointer from the right wing at 11:46 to give the Cardinals some breathing room. The Cardinals could never get complete control of the game, but Brandon Chappell's three-pointer at 4:35 gave Lamar a 10-point lead, 60-50. A Matthew Barrow 3-pointer at 3:08 pushed the lead to 65-52.
After struggling at the free throw line for much of the game, Lamar continues to make its freebies when they count. Hopkins made 7-of-8 from the line over the final 3:43 to seal the win for the Cardinals.
Hopkins, a 6-2 guard from Baltimore, Md./Panola JC, was 4-of-10 from the field, including 2-of-5 from 3-point range, and 11-of-15 from the free throw line. He also added four assists and two steals.
Sanders recorded his second straight double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds. Davis added 14 points and seven rebounds. Barrow added 11 points and five rebounds and Chappell came off the bench to score 10 points and grabbed a career-best six rebounds.
Lamar shot 36.2 percent (21-of-58) from the field, 30.4 percent (7-of-23) from 3-point range and 62.2 percent (23-of-37) from the free throw line. The Cardinals outrebounded TSU 48 to 43, which led to a 17-13 edge in second chance points.
Nick Walker came off the bench to lead TSU with 16 points, five rebounds and five assists. Chris Moore recorded a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Jones also added 12 points for the Tigers.
TSU shot 36.5 percent (23-of-63) from the field, 45.5 percent (5-of-11) from 3-point range and 50 percent (13-of-26) from the free throw line. The Tigers forced 23 Lamar turnovers, but committed 22 themselves, and posted a 19-15 advantage in points off turnovers.