Northwestern State beats slumping UIW, 66-54

Northwestern State dribbles out the last few seconds on the clock Wednesday night in a 66-54 victory at UIW, its first since Dec. 9.

Forward Ishmael Lane scored 22 points, and Northwestern State (La.) snapped a 17-game losing streak Wednesday night with a 66-54 victory over the Incarnate Word Cardinals.

Despite a season-high 19 points from Sam Burmeister, UIW lost its 17th straight, the longest skid in the school’s five-year history in the Southland Conference.

UIW freshman Augustine Ene started at point guard and scored a season-high 13.

Northwestern shot 51.5 percent from the field to seize a 38-32 halftime lead in a duel between cellar-dwellers in the SLC.

The game was played in UIW’s Convocation Center before a sparse crowd announced at 876.


Northwestern State 4-22, 1-14
Incarnate Word 5-20, 0-15


“We just got to play harder,” said Burmeister, who scored 16 of his points in the first half. “We made some wrong mistakes at the wrong time.

“Every time we got it to two or four points we either get a turnover or miss a couple of free throws, which essentially is a turnover, and they come down and score.

“Just got to keep working, try to get one win. We got three opportunities to get one win. We don’t want to go this year without getting a win in conference.”


Seven minutes into the second half, UIW guard Cody Graham suffered a broken front tooth on a nasty fall under the basket.

Graham drove hard to the goal and drew contact with a Demons player, before coming down hard and hitting his head on the floor.

“He kind of blocked it, and his body hit mine,” Graham said. “When his body hit mine, I turned in the air, and when I turned, I banged my head on the ground.

“Then I banged it again and I bit my lip.”

After the fall, play was stopped so that the trainer could attend to him. Then he walked off to seek treatment. Graham returned to the bench later to watch the end of the game.

“I’m not in too much pain right now,” Graham said later. “It’s just a weird feeling right now, missing a tooth. Hopefully the doctor can take care of it and it’s not too serious.”

Graham said he will see a doctor Wednesday. He said he hopes to play Saturday at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

Notable/Northwestern State

Northwestern State’s last victory came on Dec. 9 in Alexandria, La., against Louisiana College.

Coach Mike McConathy, who has led the Demons to three NCAA tournaments in the past 18 seasons, said it feels good to break the streak.

“It’s been a long dry spell,” he said. “It’s been difficult. Got a lot of young guys. You know, they continue to be coach-able. We not very pretty but we compete very hard.

“We’re just fortunate that we were able to do the things that we did (tonight). I felt like, defensively, we did a good job. I mean, I have utmost respect for UIW and the shooters they have.”

Northwestern held UIW to 30.4 percent shooting for the game, including 23.1 percent in the second half (6 of 26).

UIW guard Sam Burmeister sneaks behind the defense for a fast break layup in the first half.

Mississippi State deals Texas A&M third straight loss

Mississippi State played with a purpose Tuesday night and recorded a convincing, 93-81 Southeastern Conference victory over the Texas A&M Aggies.

The Bulldogs led for the final 33 minutes in what was regarded as their best road win of the year.

It was also their first road win in history at College Station.

The Aggies, meanwhile, have lost three straight.

Perhaps of more concern, the Aggies have yielded more than 90 points twice in a row, giving up 94 points to the Arkansas Razorbacks last weekend and now 93 to the Bulldogs.

Against the Bulldogs, the Aggies shot 50.8 percent from the field but were out-rebounded 44-31, including 16-7 on the offensive glass.

Mississippi State forward Abdul Ado and guard Quinndary Weatherspoon gave A&M fits with four offensive rebounds apiece.

Ado, a redshirt freshman, finished with 19 points and nine rebounds. Weatherspoon had 17 points, six boards and five assists.

A&M forward Tyler Davis led the home team with 25 points and 11 rebounds.


Texas A&M 17-11, 6-9
Mississippi State 20-8, 8-7


“Obviously, we are disappointed in the loss and disappointed in giving up … back-to-back games with 94 and 93 points,” Texas A&M coach Billy Kennedy said, in statements posted on the Aggies’ website. “We lost our defensive identity for whatever reason.

“We are struggling to make the tough play on the defensive end of the floor, and that is my responsibility. I have to do a better job of getting us prepared to play on the defensive end.

“I am not taking anything away from Mississippi State. Their guards were hard to defend, and we couldn’t keep them out of the lane. Their athleticism really gave us a lot of problems, and they have a good team.”

Coming up

Texas A&M at Vanderbilt, Saturday
South Carolina at Mississippi State, Saturday

Louisville ordered to vacate 2013 national title

The University of Louisville no longer can claim in the official record that its men’s basketball program won the 2013 NCAA championship.

Louisville has been ordered to vacate records for four seasons of former coach Rick Pitino’s controversial tenure, including trips to the Final Four in both 2012 and 2013.

According to an NCAA release, Louisville is also required to return money received through conference revenue sharing for appearances in the national tournament from 2012-15.

Officials at a Louisville news conference pegged the fine at about $600,000.

The NCAA determined in its investigation that a former Louisville basketball staffer arranged parties in which strippers entertained players and recruits.

In the wake of the allegations, Louisville self-imposed a penalty by taking itself out of consideration for the 2016 NCAA tournament.

The newest penalties came down after the school’s appeal of the additional sanctions was denied.

Pitino was fired in October over a separate matter, when Louisville acknowledged that its program was being investigated as part of a federal corruption probe of college basketball.

The former coach was linked to a plan to funnel $100,000 to the family of a recruit.

Pitino was not charged criminally in the probe.

Louisville is viewed as an NCAA tournament-caliber team this season under interim coach David Padgett.

The Cardinals are 18-9 and 8-6 in the Atlantic Coast Conference leading into a Wednesday night game at No. 5 Duke.

Graham leads No. 8 Kansas past slumping Oklahoma, 104-74

Eighth-ranked Kansas played at a championship level Monday night, following the lead of senior point guard Devonte’ Graham to a 104-74 victory over the slumping Oklahoma Sooners.

Shooting for a 14th straight Big 12 regular-season title, Kansas won its third in a row to move into first place by a half game over Texas Tech.

Graham produced 23 points and seven assists, while guiding an offense that hit the 100-point barrier for the first time in conference play and the fourth time overall this season.

OU freshman sensation Trae Young, the nation’s leader in scoring (29.0) and assists (9.2), struggled again with his shot.

Though the 6-foot-2 point guard passed for nine assists, Young made only 3 of 13 from the field to score a season-low 11 — 18 below his average.

Young simply doesn’t appear to have the same explosive burst that he did in November and December.

He has hit only 14 of 50 shots from the floor in his last three games.


Kansas 22-6, 11-4
Oklahoma 16-11, 6-9

Big picture

Kansas — The up and down Jayhawks are getting hot at the right time. They hit 60.9 percent from the field and 55.2 percent (16 of 29) from three.

Oklahoma — Once regarded as a premier team nationally, the Sooners have dropped nine of their last 11. They need to start winning just to make the 68-team NCAA tournament field.


“We’re a better basketball team than we were three weeks ago. I do believe that,” Kansas coach Bill Self said in comments posted on KU social media.

Graham, a senior from Raleigh, N.C., said it felt great to see the Jayhawks play so well. “We haven’t won like this in a while,” he said.

Coming up

Kansas at Texas Tech, Saturday
Kansas State at Oklahoma, Saturday

No. 24 Middle Tennessee makes history with first AP ranking

The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders have vaulted into the Associated Press Top 25 for the first time in program history.

Middle Tennessee is ranked 24th in the nation, according to the wire service poll released Monday.

The Blue Raiders of Conference USA are coached by Kermit Davis, who has led the program to NCAA tournament’s round of 32 in each of the past two seasons.

“You feel so happy for your players with all the hard work they’ve put in,” Davis said in a statement. You also feel great for your fan base and your MT brand, especially when you get ranked this late in the year based on the long haul and what we’ve done.”

Laying the groundwork for their rise in stature, the Blue Raiders registered round-of-64 upsets in 2016 over second-seeded Michigan State and last year over fifth-seeded Minnesota.

This year, the Blue Raiders beat Vanderbilt and Ole Miss on the road in the pre-conference and then started a dominant roll in the C-USA, winning 14 out of 15 games.

Last week they posted double-digit victories at Southern Miss and Louisiana Tech, extending their winning streak to nine.

Middle Tennessee beat UTSA by 24 points on its home floor in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, on Jan. 25.

AP Top 25
Monday, Feb. 19, 2018

1. Virginia 24-2 ACC
2. Michigan State 26-3 Big Ten
3. Villanova 24-3 Big East
4. Xavier 24-4 Big East
5. Duke 22-5 ACC
6. Texas Tech 22-5 Big 12
6. Gonzaga 25-4 West Coast
8. Kansas 21-6 Big 12
9. Purdue 24-5 Big Ten
10. North Carolina 21-7 ACC
11. Cincinnati 23-4 American
12. Auburn 23-4 SEC
13. Wichita State 21-5 American
14. Arizona 21-6 Pac-12
15. Clemson 20-6 ACC
16. Ohio State 22-7 Big Ten
17. Michigan 22-7 Big Ten
18. Rhode Island 21-4 Atlantic 10
19. Tennessee 19-7 SEC
20. Nevada 23-5 Mountain West
21. West Virginia 19-8 Big 12
22. Saint Mary’s 25-4 West Coast
23. Houston 21-5 American
24. Middle Tennessee 22-5 Conference USA
25. Florida State 19-8 ACC

Jackson-led UTSA beats Charlotte in overtime, 97-89

Freshman Jhivvan Jackson scored 30 points Saturday as the UTSA Roadrunners turned back the Charlotte 49ers, 97-89, in overtime.

In the game played at Charlotte, North Carolina, UTSA’s all-time freshman scoring leader reached the 30-point mark for the third time this season.

Jhivvan Jackson

He made 11 of 22 shots from the field and, for good measure, he also nailed 4 of 12 from three-point distance.

Freshman Keaton Wallace scored 14 of his 17 points in the first half for the Roadrunners, who barely escaped against the last-place team in Conference USA.

Charlotte has lost 12 straight. UTSA, meanwhile, bounced back from Thursday night’s 100-62 loss at Old Dominion.

The Roadrunners are 6-2 in their last eight.

Crunch time

With the game on the line, Jackson nailed two straight jumpers in the final 25 seconds of regulation.

After Jackson hit the first one, guard Andrien White completed a three-point play to give Charlotte an 84-82 lead.

With the clock ticking under 10 seconds, UTSA advanced the ball and found Jackson, who hit the tying shot with 2.9 ticks left.

Jon Davis missed the potential game winner off the front of the rim at the regulation buzzer.

Overtime heroics

Jackson scored seven points in the extra period to give him 30 for the game and 518 for the season.

Devin Brown held the UTSA freshman record of 483 points until Jackson surpassed it Thursday night at Old Dominion.

In the overtime against Charlotte, he showed that he can also do more than score.

The former three-time Puerto Rican junior national team member created opportunities for teammates.

Two of Jackson’s late drives to the bucket led directly to four points, on a layup and two free throws, by Byron Frohnen.


UTSA 15-12, 8-6
Charlotte 5-20, 1-13


“Exactly what I expected. I thought they’d be really, really good and that it’d be a fight the whole way, and it was. They have good players. They’re just a little snake-bitten. They can’t quite finish ’em right now. They have a couple of terrific guards. It was tough.” — UTSA coach Steve Henson.

Charlotte highlights

Junior guard Andrien White produced 25 points, six rebounds and four assists. Backcourt mate Jon Davis had 18 points and eight assists.

Coming up

Southern Miss at UTSA, 7 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 22
Louisiana Tech at UTSA, 7 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 24

Stephen F. Austin builds early lead and cruises past UIW, 81-70

UIW center Devin Wyatt beats the SFA defense for a dunk in the first half.

Forward Leon Gilmore III produced 22 points and 11 rebounds Saturday afternoon as Stephen F. Austin claimed an 81-70 victory at the University of the Incarnate Word.

UIW freshman guard Augustine Ene sparked a rally that cut what had been a 20-point SFA lead near the end of the first half to six with 12:17 remaining in the game.

But SFA just had too much firepower and sent UIW reeling to its 16th straight loss.

“The guys could have folded, and it could have been a 30- or 40-point loss,” UIW coach Ken Burmeister said. “But they came back in the second half and gave us great effort.

“We made some threes and Augustine gave us some open-play ball where he was going downhill.

“He picked up the pace. (But) their size just hurts us. Gilmore and (AJ) Holyfield hurt us pretty good.”

With the loss, hard-luck UIW fell to 5-19 overall and 0-14 in the Southland Conference. SFA improved to 22-5 and 11-3.

The Cardinals have already been eliminated from contention to play in the SLC postseason tournament.

“I give Incarnate Word all the credit for battling back the way they did in the second half,” SFA coach Kyle Keller said. “We got some frustration in us on the defensive end. They just attacked us on the bounce and had some shots go in.

“Whether it’s a double-figure win or close to it, you’ll take that on the road anytime.”

Kevon Harris scored 22 and Shannon Bogues added 19 for the Lumberjacks, who have won four straight and six of seven.

For UIW, Shawn Johnson had 23 points and eight rebounds. Sam Burmeister chipped in with a season-high 18 points.

UIW notebook

Sidelined and not in uniform for UIW were center Konstantin Kulikof and guard Jorden Kite.

Kulikov was held out because of a compliance issue, a school spokesman said.

Burmeister declined comment on Kulikov’s situation. The coach said that Kite has a wrist injury.

UIW has been without starting point guard Jalin Hart for the past 12 games.

Hart, who averaged 15.9 points per game in 2016-17, is out for the season because of academics.

SFA’s Aaron Augustin takes a charge to force a turnover late in the first half of Saturday’s game at UIW.

UTSA’s Jackson ‘just trying to win as many games as possible’

The UTSA Roadrunners didn’t have much to celebrate in the wake of a 100-62 loss at Old Dominion on Thursday night.

It was the worst loss of the season for the Roadrunners.

Regardless, it’s worth noting that guard Jhivvan Jackson broke a 19-year-old school record for most points in a season by a freshman.

Jackson scored 22 against the Monarchs, hiking his season total to 488.

With his effort, the 6-foot Puerto Rico native surpassed the previous record of 483 points by Devin Brown, who did it in 1998-99.

Brown, from South San West Campus High School, went on to play in the NBA and claimed a championship ring with the Spurs.

Jackson was never aware that he ranked among the top freshmen scorers in the nation or that he could break the UTSA school record until it came up in media interviews last month.

At the time, he said, “It really just comes down to how much my teammates and my coaches trust me with the ball and give me the right to make plays. They trust me to do that.

“That’s really what I’m doing. Trying to win as many games as possible for this team. Just, making the right play and making everyone better.”

Jackson, averaging 18.8 points per game, ranks fifth among freshmen on the NCAA scoring list.

Ranking ahead of Jackson on the national list are Trae Young of Oklahoma (first overall in Division I at 29.1 ppg), Howard’s RJ Cole (24.3), Marvin Bagley III of Duke (21.2) and Arizona’s Deandre Ayton (19.7).

UTSA freshman scoring leaders

1. JHIVVAN JACKSON 2017-18 488 18.8
2. Devin Brown 1998-99 483 16.7
3. Jeromie Hill 2010-11 455 13.4
4. Devin Gibson 2007-08 396 14.1
5. Derrick Gervin 1982-83 347 13.9
6. KEATON WALLACE 2017-18 290 11.2
7. Byron Frohnen 2016-17 280 8.5
8. Giovanni De Nicolao 2016-17 272 8.2
9. Kurt Attaway 2003-04 245 7.4
10. McEverett Powers 1998-99 221 7.6

Winning record in sight

Despite the loss Thursday night, the Roadrunners still have plenty to play for.

They’ll take a 14-12 record and 7-6 mark in the C-USA into a road test Saturday night at Charlotte, the first of five games remaining on the regular-season schedule.

If they can win at least three down the stretch, they’d clinch their first winning record in six years, no matter what happens at the C-USA tournament.

The tournament is set for March 7-10 in Frisco.

UTSA records since 2011-12

2011-12 18-14, 10-6 Southland
2012-13 10-22, 3-14 WAC
2013-14 8-22, 4-12 C-USA
2014-15 14-16, 8-10 C-USA
2015-16 5-27, 3-15 C-USA
2016-17 14-19, 8-10 C-USA

B.J. Stith scores 36 as Old Dominion throttles UTSA, 100-62

UTSA coach Steve Henson looks forward to playing at last-place Charlotte on Saturday night and trying to find a spark.

Trying to start a new winning streak. Trying anything to forget about Thursday night in Norfolk, Virginia.

After B.J. Stith and the Old Dominion Monarchs dominated in a 100-62 victory, Henson seemed to have a hard time shaking the feeling of his team’s worst loss of the season.

“We can’t let this destroy what we’ve done the last few weeks,” Henson said on the team’s radio broadcast. “We’ve been doing good things. We just got man-handled tonight.

“It was grown men just taking us to school. We didn’t have much response to it.”

Stith produced a career-high 36 points and pulled down 10 rebounds for the Monarchs, who won their fourth in a row.

In winning their eighth game out of nine, Old Dominion improved to 20-5 overall and 11-2 in Conference USA.

Winners of four straight coming in, UTSA fell to 14-12 and 7-6.

The 38-point margin of defeat eclipsed a 24-point loss that UTSA suffered at Middle Tennessee on Jan. 25 as the worst of the season.

Stith made an early statement, hitting a three-pointer 20 seconds into the game and then scoring 28 by halftime.

By that time, the Monarchs were in charge, 52-36.

“He was just fantastic in the first half,” Henson said. “He was pretty good overall. He just had a real good rhythm going and got hot and made threes. Got to the free-throw line. Did a little bit of everything.”

Jackson breaks UTSA freshman record

UTSA guard Jhivvan Jackson moved up to No. 1 in the UTSA record books for points scored by a freshman, surpassing Devin Brown.

Jackson pumped in 22, giving him 488 for the season.

Brown, who later played in the NBA and won a championship ring with the Spurs, scored 483 for the Roadrunners in 1998-99.

Around the C-USA

The struggling Charlotte 49ers fell to 5-19 overall and 1-12 in the conference after an 87-86 home loss to UTEP.

After Thursday’s games, Middle Tennessee leads the C-USA at 13-1, followed by Old Dominion and Western Kentucky at 13-2. Marshall is fourth at 9-4.

UTSA and North Texas are tied for fifth at 7-6, while Louisiana Tech and Alabama-Birmingham are next at 7-7.

After that, it’s Southern Miss (6-8), Florida International (5-8), Florida Atlantic (4-9), UTEP (3-10), Rice (2-11) and Charlotte (1-12).

Nearly tournament time

The top four teams in the standings get a first-round bye in the C-USA tournament, set for March 7-10 at Frisco. The top 12 teams qualify.

Lamar hits 10 threes in 85-62 victory over Incarnate Word

Nick Garth came off the bench for 19 points Wednesday night as the Lamar Cardinals routed Incarnate Word 85-62 at Beaumont in Southland Conference men’s basketball.

Garth hit five of Lamar’s 10 three-pointers in handing UIW its 15th straight loss.

Shawn Johnson led UIW with 27 points and 7 assists.


Incarnate Word 5-18, 0-13
Lamar 16-11, 8-6

Coming up

Stephen F. Austin at Incarnate Word, Saturday at 3 p.m.