A&M-Commerce Lions vs. Tarleton State Texans
Wednesday, January 18 • 8 p.m.
The Field House • Commerce, Texas
Saturday, January 21 • 7 p.m.
Wisdom Gym • Stephenville, Texas
Records: A&M-Commerce (6-9, 1-6 LSC); Tarleton State (15-1, 7-0 LSC)
A&M-Commerce faces a stiff challenge this week, embarking on a home-and-home series with Lone Star Conference-leading Tarleton State. The Lions and Texans square off at the Field House on Wednesday, January 18, beginning at 8 p.m. The series then shifts to Wisdon Gym in Stephenville for a 7 p.m. tip-off on Saturday, January 21.
Lions On The Web
Lion basketball fans will be able to keep up with all the action this week as the Lions battle Tarleton State. J.P. Heath will call both the men's and women's games live against the Texans on KETR 88.9 FM and online at KETR.org. Live stats of both games will be available at LionAthletics.com.
Scouting the Texans
2011-12: 15-1 overall, 7-0 Lone Star Conference, 3-0 road. Ranked sixth in this week's NABC Division II Coaches Poll .
Last Three Games: W vs. West Texas A&M (59-56), W vs. Angelo State (76-55), W at Abilene Christian (62-53).
Head Coach: Lonn Reisman (Pittsburg State, '78). 24th season at Tarleton State (498-211, .702); 24th season overall (498-211, .702).
Texan Key Players:
• Chris Harrell (Sr., G): 213 pts. (13.3 avg.), 51.9 FG pct., 38.5 3FG pct., 87.5 FT pct., 68 reb. (4.3 avg.), 25 ast., 20 stl.
• Fabian Wilson (Sr. F/C): 166 pts. (10.4 avg.), 47.3 FG pct., 113 reb. (7.1 avg.), 16 blk., 9 stl.
• Shedrick Haynes (Sr., G): 162 pts. (10.1 avg.), 43.5 FG pct., 33.3 3FG pct., 57 ast., 22 stl.
• Zach Nelson (So, F): 142 pts. (8.9 avg.), 57.3 FG pct., 70 reb. (4.4 avg.), 14 ast., 11 stl.
• Brian Word (Jr., G): 131 pts. (8.2 avg.), 46.5 FG pct., 33.3 3FG pct., 77 reb. (4.8 avg.), 32 ast., 19 stl.
Series Information: A&M-Commerce and Tarleton State meet for the 51st and 52nd times this week with the Lions holding a 28-22 lead in the all-time series. The Texans have had the upper hand in recent history, however, winning the last three against A&M-Commerce, including a 70-66 victory in Stephenville in 2010-11, and are 6-4 in the last 10 against the Lions.
Walker Against the Texans: 6-11 overall (.353). 4-4 home, 2-6 road, 0-1 neutral.
King Continues to Pace Lions
Senior Desmond King continues to pace the Lions through the opening four games of the season. The 2010-11 Lone Star Conference Newcomer of the Year and 2011-12 LSC Preseason Player of the Year, King leads the Lions in both points per game (16.6) and rebounds per game (5.8), including a team-high 44 offensive boards. King is also shooting 58.3 percent from the floor for A&M-Commerce and set a new career-high with 34 points against Abilene Christian last Wednesday. King has recorded a pair of double-doubles on the year, including a 30-point, 12-rebound performance against Henderson State on Dec. 19.
Hambrick Reaches Pair of Career Milestones
Senior Brad Hambrick has been a constant in the A&M-Commerce lineup for the past four seasons, and has reached a pair of impressive career milestones in 2011-12. Hambrick, who became the Lions' all-time three-point leader in the season-opener at Southern Arkansas, hit his 200th career three-pointer in the victory over Eastern New Mexico, becoming the first player in program history to reach the feat. Against West Texas A&M, Hambrick tied a career-high with 25 points, reaching 1,000 points for his A&M-Commerce career. He enters the week with 1,045 career points and 202 three-pointers.
Whitley Emerging As Solid Offensive Threat For Lions
Junior Preston Whitley has proven to become an offensive spark off the bench for A&M-Commerce this season, averaging 10.3 points and 3.6 rebounds per game. Whitley recorded a season-high 21 points in the victory against Eastern New Mexico, five shy of his career-best 26 set in 2010-11. He has scored in double-figures for the Lions on eight occasions, including 19 points against Drury (Dec. 10) and Harding (Dec. 18), including a season-high eight rebounds against the Panthers.
Sledge Providing Spark To Lion Backcourt
Senior LaBree Sledge has become the lynch pin of the Lions early in the 2011-12 season. Sledge has taken on the point guard duties this season and hasn't disappointed, leading the Lone Star Conference in assists per game (4.8) while ranking second in assist to turnover ratio (1.4), fourth in three-point field goal percentage (42.5) and seventh in minutes played (3.8). Sledge is averaging 7.4 points, 2.3 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 0.7 steals per game.
Walker Impressive in Lion Debut
Sophomore Devondrick Walker continues to be a major factor in the A&M-Commerce lineup in 2011-12, appearing in 15 games with 11 starts for the Lions. Walker is averaging 7.7 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 0.8 steals per game. He has scored in double-digits in five games this season, including a career-high 14 points against both Drury and Eastern New Mexico, while scoring nine points on three other occasions. He just missed his first career double-double against the Greyhounds, finishing with nine rebounds.
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