Cards and Bearkats to battle in key SLC contest

GO CARDINALS <strong>Junior Devon Lamb is the top rebounder in SLC games at 11.3 rebounds per contest</strong>
Junior Devon Lamb is the top rebounder in SLC games at 11.3 rebounds per contest

Feb. 24, 2011

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BEAUMONT - With just one game separating the two teams in the Southland Conference basketball standings, Saturday night's 7:05 game between Lamar and Sam Houston State will carry added importance as the 2010-11 regular season winds down.

The game will be broadcast on KLVI 560 AM, the flagship station for Lamar University athletics, and can be seen live on the Lamar Web site at

Eight of the Southland's 12 teams will earn a berth in the 2011 State Farm Southland Conference Basketball Tournament. Four teams, including Sam Houston, currently stand in a tie for fifth at 7-6 in league play. The Cardinals are 6-7, tied with Southeastern Louisiana for ninth with three games to play.

The winner of Saturday's game would earn a big advantage over the losing team since LU and SHSU will only meet once this season. Should the two teams finish the season tied, the first tiebreaker would be head-to-head result.

This will be the 53rd meeting between the long-time rivals with the Cardinals holding a 28-24 advantage, and a 19-8 advantage in Beaumont. Sam Houston won both meetings last year on its way to a regular season conference championship.

Lamar and Sam Houston's most recent meeting was a 66-54 Bearkat victory on Feb. 17, 2010, in the Montagne Center. SHSU shot 52.0 percent from the field in the first half, while holding Lamar to 20.7 percent shooting, in building a 33-16 halftime lead.

The Cardinals, who trailed by as many as 23 points in the second half, got to within eight points but would get no closer. Justin Nabors led LU with 19 points and seven rebounds, while Preston Brown recorded 19 points and 11 boards for the Bearkats.

Lamar continues to lead the SLC in scoring, although that number dropped to 82.1 points per game after scoring just 55 in Wednesday's 60-55 loss at Stephen F. Austin. The Lumberjacks are the nation's stingiest defense, allowing just 55.6 points per game.

Junior guard Devon Lamb continues to fuel the top rebounding team in the conference. The 6-foot-2 Lamb is pulling down 8.2 rebounds per game, including an amazing 11.3 in SLC games, for a Cardinals' team which is averaging 41.6 per game.

The Bearkats have three players averaging at least 5.4 rebounds per game to rank second in the conference at 37.3 rebounds per game. Senior forward Gilberto Clavell, who averages a team-best 19.5 points per game, also leads the squad in rebounds at 7.2 per outing.

Junior guard Mike James, coming off a 17-point effort at SFA on Wednesday, continues to pace the Cardinals' scoring attack at 12.3 points per game. Fellow junior Anthony Miles is just behind at 11.7 ppg, and has now scored 938 career points.




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