Lamar and Sam Houston State to renew rivalry Thursday

GO CARDINALS <strong>Rhon Mitchell is coming off his second double-double of the year</strong>
Rhon Mitchell is coming off his second double-double of the year

Jan. 9, 2013

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BEAUMONT - Lamar University will host Southland Conference rival Sam Houston State on Thursday evening at 7:30 in a men's basketball contest as the Cardinals will look to register their first league win this season.

The Last Meeting
Sam Houston State49
February 25, 2012
Huntsville, Texas
James scores 30 as Lamar rolls over Sam Houston State 72-49
HUNTSVILLE - After being challenged by head basketball coach Pat Knight earlier in the week, Lamar's senior class responded in a big way Saturday evening at Johnson Coliseum as the Cardinals used a huge second half to roll to a 72-49 Southland Conference win over Sam Houston State.

The Cardinals are coming off a tough 67-63 home loss to Southeastern Louisiana on Monday which dropped them to 2-13 overall and 0-3 in conference action. The Bearkats also lost at home Monday by a 73-64 score to Northwestern State to fall to 8-6 on the year and 1-1 in the Southland.

Thursday's game will be broadcast live on KLVI 560 AM with Dave Hofferth handling the play-by-play. It will also be streamed live on Lamar's Athletic web site at

This will be the 55th meeting between the two schools since 1951-52 when Lamar became a four-year institution. The Cardinals won 72-49 in Huntsville last year in the only meeting and hold a 29-25 series advantage. Lamar leads 19-9 in Beaumont, but the Bearkats have won the last three games in the Montagne Center.

Last year's meeting came on Feb. 25 at Johnson Coliseum with the Cardinals blowing open a close game in the second half to pick up a 72-49 victory. The two teams were tied at 28-28 at halftime before Lamar shot 63.3 percent from the floor in the second half to earn the road win and snap a three-game losing streak to the Bearkats.

Mike James scored 30 points to lead all players, while Anthony Miles added 14 points, eight rebounds and seven assists. Devon Lamb chipped in with 15 points and five assists for the Cardinals who committed just nine turnovers and outrebounded SHSU 36-23.

Darius Gatson finished with 13 points and four assists to lead the Bearkats. No SHSU player finished with more than three rebounds.

In Monday's loss to the Lions, Lamar trailed by as many as 15 points in the first half and by a 37-28 score at the half. The Cards rallied back and grabbed a 57-56 with just over five minutes to play, but SLU scored the final five points of the contest to earn the win.

Rhon Mitchell came off the LU bench to post 14 points and 10 rebounds for his second double-double of the season. Fellow freshman Keilan Blanks added 14 points, while Amos Wilson finished with a dozen.

Mitchell is averaging a team-high 10.8 points per game for the Cardinals who are scoring 58.3 per game as a team. Lamar, which is third in the conference in free throw shooting at 67.9 percent, is allowing just over 77 points per game.

Senior forward Stan Brown is just behind Mitchell in scoring at 9.8 per game, and is also averaging a team-high 6.5 rebounds per game. Donley Minor is adding 8.5 points and 2.9 assists per game, and Wilson is posting eight points and a team-best 1.4 steals per contest.

The Bearkats come into the game averaging 65.4 points per game while allowing just under 62. Sam Houston is shooting 38.3 percent from the floor as a team which is ninth in the 10-team Southland Conference. The Bearkats, who average 38.4 rebounds per game, are also shooting 30.6 percent from 3-point range and 65.1 percent from the free throw line. SHSU is second in the conference in 3-pointers per game at 6.7 per contest.

SHSU does not have a player averaging double-digit scoring, but six different players are scoring more than six a game. Senior guard Darius Gatson is scoring 9.1 points per game and handing out three assists per contest. Junior forward Terrance Motley is adding 8.3 points and a team-best 6.0 rebounds per game.




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