South Region No. 12 seed Stephen F. Austin was a trendy pick to at the very least win its first game of the NCAA tournament, with Brad Underwood’s team boasting a 28-game win streak entering their game against No. 5 VCU. But after being on the wrong end of a 26-5 second half run, the Lumberjacks trailed by ten with 3:38 remaining and looked to be on their way home.
However SFA didn’t wilt, continuing to compete and managing to rally against VCU’s dreaded “Havoc” system. A Desmond Haymon (17 points, seven rebounds) four-point play with 3.6 seconds remaining in regulation forced overtime, and SFA would go on to win 77-75 in overtime to move their win streak to 29 games in a row.
Jacob Parker scored 22 points for the Lumberjacks, who won despite committing 17 turnovers with 11 of those coming during the aforementioned 26-5 run. While things certainly didn’t look good for SFA during that stretch, they managed to weather the storm, and when the Lumberjacks didn’t turn the basketball over they performed well offensively.
Stephen F. Austin made 52.9% of its shots from the field, shooting 61.8% on their two-point shots. VCU has been one of the nation’s best defensive teams when it comes to defending the three-pointer, which makes it understandable that Stephen F. Austin shot 6-for-17 from deep. But after beating the VCU pressure the Lumberjacks needed to take advantage of their opportunities inside of the arc, and Parker was the player who proved most capable of doing so.
Now having won 29 straight games, Stephen F. Austin isn’t a team that’s satisfied with winning one game and then heading home. As our own Scott Phillips wrote last month, this is a group capable of accomplishing more than that. And thanks to Haymon’s shot in the final seconds or regulation, Stephen F. Austin will have that chance.
Arizona commit Terrance Ferguson has been known as one of the best dunkers in the country for the last few years. So you knew the 6-foot-6 wing was going to attempt the latest internet dunk craze that’s been going around.
Some call it the, “5-point play” in which the dunker makes a 3-pointer and immediately sprints following the shot release to catch the make for an under-the-legs dunk.
It’s as tough as it sounds and Ferguson makes it look easy.
Bol Bol is the son of former NBA center Manute Bol, and the younger Bol is earning quite a bit of attention himself as a five-star prospect in the Class of 2018.
The 6-foot-11 Bol showed off some of his freakish coordination and athleticism on Friday night, by ripping a steal and taking it coast-to-coast for an under-the-legs dunk in the middle of a game at the Jayhawk Invitational.
Bol will be one of the players to watch this spring as he plays with KC Run GMC.
Iowa State guard Naz Mitrou-Long gets hardship waiver to play additional year
“Everything happens for a reason and although it hurt to not be able to play for a group of guys I loved last year, my body needed time to recover and that time off allowed me to feel the best I’ve felt since my freshman year,” Mitrou-Long said in the release. “I’m glad I’ll be able to play for the best fans in the country and represent the name on the front of my jersey, Iowa State, one more year. Words can’t describe this feeling. Cyclone Nation, be ready for a special year.”
The 6-foot-4 Long played in eight games last season for Iowa State as he averaged 12 points per game. He missed the rest of the season to deal with pain in his surgically repaired hips. Mitrou-Long has been a very effective three-point shooter during his career at Iowa State and he should be a nice option to have for next season if he’s healthy.
CIAA will stay in North Carolina despite state’s LGBT law
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association says it won’t move its headquarters, its basketball tournament or other conference championships from North Carolina, despite the state’s controversial new LGBT law.
The CIAA said in a statement Thursday that it will instead partner with the NCAA to educate its members on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues as it does on other issues, like graduation rates and concussion management.
The Charlotte Observer reports that the CIAA, the oldest African-American sports conference in the U.S., has hosted its annual basketball tournament in Charlotte since 2006 and announced it was moving its headquarters to Charlotte from Virginia in 2015.
The CIAA said Thursday that it will continue to “monitor the issues,” as it has since House Bill 2 passed.
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