Cards Travels To Lubbock For New Year's Day Tilt Against Texas Tech



Dec. 31, 2007

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Fans can view the game on the following stations in the Beaumont/Port Arthur area:
Time Warner Cable - Channel 23
DirecTV - Channel 643
Dish Network - Channel 416
However...the game will not be available in Lubbock, Dallas, Amarillo or Wichita Falls.

Happy New Year!!!
Lamar makes its final non-conference road trip of the 2007-08 campaign to face Texas Tech on Jan. 1. Tuesday's game will mark just the second time for a Cardinal squad to play on New Year's Day. A year ago, LU defeated Louisiana College, 91-76, in Beaumont.

Lamar-Texas Tech Series History
This is the second all-time meeting between Lamar and Texas Tech. The Red Raiders won the first game, 83-68, on Dec. 13, 1979 in a game played at Lubbock's Municipal Coliseum. Since Lamar moved to four-year status in 1951-52, the Cardinals have played 33 games in the west Texas cities of Abilene, Alpine, El Paso and Lubbock.

Lamar Versus Big 12 Schools
Lamar enters Tuesday's game with a 12-36 all-time record against Big 12 member schools. Since the league's inception in 1996-97, the Cardinals are 2-7 with wins over Baylor in 1997-98 and Texas A&M in 1999-00. LU has lost its last five dating back to the A&M win in Beaumont.

Non-Conference Numbers Under Roccaforte
Lamar is 11-14 in non-conference games under head coach Steve Roccaforte, with a 5-6 mark thus far in 2007-08. The Cardinals will conclude the non-league portion of their schedule at home next Tuesday when Utah Valley State visits the Montagne Center.

Lamar Looking To Stop Road Woes
When Lamar faces Texas Tech in Lubbock on Tuesday, it will be looking to snap an 11-game non-conference road losing streak. The Cardinals' last road win over a non-SLC foe came on Dec. 14, 2006 at Arkansas State in Billy Tubbs' final season. Under current head coach Steve Roccaforte, LU is 2-16 away from the Montagne Center and 0-10 in non-league action.

Close Ones
The Cardinals have lost six games this season but three have been especially agonizing for the LU faithful. In losses to Wyoming (75-71), Oral Roberts (65-57) and at Northern Illinois (65-63), Lamar was unable to maintain second-half leads in each contest. LU led Wyoming by 12 with 18:03 left and by 5 with 5:36 left; five days later against ORU the Cards had an 11-point lead in the first half and led 49-48 with 7:41 to play before being surrendering 11-consecutive points over the next 3:41; and after taking a 13-point lead on NIU with 16:54 remaining, LU was outscored 29-14 the rest of the way as the Huskies second-chance tip-in at the buzzer proved to be the difference.

Forcing Turnovers
The Cardinals' defense has done a very good job in forcing turnovers this season. Lamar has forced 224 turnovers while committing 181 miscues. LU leads the SLC with a 3.91 turnover margin. The Cardinals have forced their opponents into at least 20 turnovers seven times this season, including five of the last six. Rice, Lyon College, Louisiana College and LeTourneau all committed more turnovers than field goals made.

Triple Double-Double Sets School Record
Darren Hopkins, Justin Nabors and Lamar Sanders combined to make school history when the trio became the first group of Lamar players to post three double-doubles in the same game.

The Season of Giving... and Keeping
Over the last five games, Lamar has averaged 19.8 assists per game, compared to just over 12 apg during the first six games. In fact, the Cardinals have assisted on 60.4 percent of their field goals over the stretch. They have also done a better job of taking care of the basketball, turning it over 15.0 times - well below the 17.7 early on in the season. In fact, LU's turnover margin has gone from +1.5 to +6.8 and sits at +3.9 on the season, which leads the Southland Conference.

Sharing The Rock
In Saturday's win over Lyon College, Lamar assisted on 28 of its 40 baskets for a 70 percent rate - a season high. A week earlier, the Cardinals handed out 14 dimes on 23 buckets for a 60.9 mark. Prior to Saturday, the previous high mark this year was 62.5 percent against Wyoming.

Lamar With Three In SLC Top 15 In 3-Pointers
Lamar is the only school in the SLC with three players ranking in the top 15 in 4-point field goal percentage. Brandon McThay ranks second at 47.8 percent on 11-of-23 this season, Kenny Dawkins is rated fourth at 44.1% and Currye Todd is 15th at 36.4%. As a team, the Cardinals rank fourth at 33.7% and third in 3-pointers made per game at 7.5.

More On The 3-Ball
Since Steve Roccaforte took over at Lamar last season, the Cardinals have made 348 total 3-pointers for an average of 8.1 per game. In those 43 games, LU has made at least 10 treys 14 times, including three this year. The season-high 16 made against Louisiana College on Dec. 8 are tied for the third-most in school history, 13th-most in the NCAA in 2007-08 and the second-most in the SLC this season. Only once in the past two seasons have the Cardinals failed to make less than four in a game (vs. NSU in the 2007 SLC Tournament).

Sanders Eclipses 500-Point Mark At Lamar
With 12 points on Saturday against Lyon College, senior F Lamar Sanders surpassed the 500-point plateau as a Cardinal. He enters the Texas Tech game with 503 points in 43 games in a Cardinal jersey. The preseason All-SLC pick from Hickory Flat, Miss., has averaged 11.7 points in 43 games - all starts. Sanders was named Second Team All-SLC a year ago after scoring 391 points for a 12.2 ppg average and pulling down a league-best 9.8 rpg.

Barrow Sitting On 99 Career 3-Pointers Made
Senior G Matthew Barrow has made 99 career three-point field goals in his 2-plus seasons with the Cardinals. He connected on 35 treys as a sophomore and 50 a year ago. He is currently 27 away from cracking the Lamar career top-10 list.

Dawkins Third In SLC In Minutes Played; 11 Cardinals With 10-plus MPG
Junior G Kenny Dawkins enters the Texas Tech game ranked third in the SLC in minutes played at 31.5. While that is nearly six minutes more per outing than Lamar Sanders' 25.7 mpg, all 11 regular players for the Cardinals are averaging at least 10 mpg. Over the last five games, head coach Steve Roccaforte has implemented the same starting lineup and has nine players averaging 10-plus mpg, with no players on the floor for more than 29 mpg.

Home Sweet Home
Lamar will play 16 games in the Montagne Center this season. The Cardinals played 14 home games last season, posting an 11-3 record, which ranked as the fifth-best home winning percentage (.786) in the Montagne Center. Since the Montagne Center opened (1984-85), Lamar has won 68.6% of its games in the 10,080-seat arena. Overall, Lamar has won 73.7% of its home games since the 1951-52 season, the Cardinals' first year competing as a four-year institution. Lamar is 5-2 at home this season and 16-5 (.762) under coach Roccaforte.

Double-Double Trouble
Following the record-setting three double-doubles on Saturday, a total of three players have combined for six double-doubles this season. Justin Nabors ranks third in the SLC with three on the year. Senior Lamar Sanders, who led the team with 12 double-doubles last season, has a pair thus far and Darren Hopkins has posted one.

Checking the RPI and Sagarin Ratings
Lamar is ranked 282 in the Sagarin Ratings (12/30/07). Sam Houston State is the highest ranked Southland Conference team at 56, followed by Stephen F. Austin at 64 and UTA at 76. The SLC is rated 23rd among 31 conferences and the Pac-10 is the top-rated conference.



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