Jaguar Sports Weekend Update

March 4, 2013 · By · Filed Under Baseball, Basketball, Football, Men's, Softball, Sun Belt Conference, Women's 

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Men’s Basketball

The Jags fell on the road to Western Kentucky on Thursday night after falling behind by as many as 14 points against the Hilltoppers. But the Jags surged late but just could not make up the deficit and fell 79-73 in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Rubit finished with 23 points and nine rebounds with four assists and three steals. Javier Carter got his second consecutive double-double with a season high 14 points and 10 rebounds. He also added six blocks and three steals against the Toppers.

The Jags rebounded in the season finale trip to Troy to face their in-state rival Trojans. The Jags capped off the season with a 53-49 win on Saturday night in the Jags first game in Troy’s brand new Trojan Arena.

South Alabama fell behind by as many as 16 points in the first half and trailed by nine points at halftime. But outscored the Trojans 34-21 in the second half to come away with the victory. But it took a key defensive stop late to preserve the Jaguar victory.

Javier Carter picked up his third consecutive double-double with 10 points and a career-high 13 rebounds. Carter also added five blocked shots including one with :12 seconds left to preserve the Jaguars three point lead at the time.

Augustine Rubit also added to his season total of double-doubles with a 13-point, 10 rebound effort.

Antoine Allen scored nine of this 12 points in the second half for the Jags.

South Alabama finishes the regular season with a 17-11 record overall and a 14-6 record in Sun Belt play. Troy lost their fifth consecutive game of the season to fall to 11-20 overall and 6-14 in Sun Belt play.

Troy’s head coach Don Maestri continues to be suck on 499 career wins.

South Alabama, who secured the #3 seed in the Sun Belt Tournament, will face the winner of the #6 seed Western Kentucky and #11 seed UL-Monroe game at 8:30pm on Saturday night at the Convention Center Court in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

In the Jags same bracket, #7 FAU and #10 Troy will face on in the first round then the winner with face #2 seed Arkansas State at 9pm on Saturday night in the SUmmit Arena. The winner of that side of the bracket will face the winner of the Jaguars side of the braket at 9pm on Sunday in the Semifinal game.

 

Football

South Alabama held their second practice of the spring practice period on Saturday morning and their third on Sunday afternoon. With three new faces coaching on the defensive side of the ball, including first year defensive coordinator Kevin Sherrer.

Sherrer, instead of installing a new playbook, is focusing on getting all of the players on the same page. They are working on communication and new signals and terminology.

“The goal is for the new staff to communicate what they want out of the players, and for the players to understand what they [the coaches] want,” head coach Joey Jones explained after practice. “We want the players to come out of the spring totally understanding what our defensive staff wants them to do. The interaction seems to be extremely good. Our players appear to have a great feel for what the coaches want. They like the new coaches and understand they know what they are talking about and they have a great relationship off the field. It’s been real good for us.”

Sherrer was hired before the start of the spring semester and NCAA rules allowed several meetings in the offseason, is helping to achieve Coach Jones’ goals for this spring.

“I was in the first team meeting when they got back from the winter break, so they knew who I was,” Sherrer said. “A lot of them came by with questions, and we were allowed a couple of hours per week in the offseason to meet with them so we were able to get in there and teach them a little bit. The toughest part was getting the staff acclimated to what we are going to do because we all came from different directions. But so far it has gone well. The players have adapted to it and are eager to learn.”

Sherrer is using veterans on the team to help get his message to the rest of the team. Bryson James, Clifton Crews, Enrique Williams, Romelle Jones, Darrius Morrow and Tyrell Pearson, all who started last season for the Jags, were acknowledged by Sherrer as having a lot of experience and leadership ability on the team.

Sherrer is building a strong foundation on which the rest of the defensive scheme will be built. It may be very simple right now, but his process will build upon that and gain complexity throughout the spring and fall camp.

“We want to have a good understanding of the defense and the scheme that we want to run,” Sherrer explained. “We want to evaluate the players that are out there and see who fits the scheme and make sure we’re doing the right things. The most important part is that we want to come away with the right fundamentals, defense striking with their hands, tackling the right way and pursuing the football.”

They will return to the practice field at 6am on Tuesday with another two hour practice scheduled for the team.
Women’s Basketball

The #7 seed South Alabama Lady’s Basketball team will open the Sun Belt Tournament on Friday with a 2pm game against #10 Troy in the Convention Center. The winner of that game will advance to play the #2 seed Arkansas-Little Rock at 2:30pm on Saturday at the Summit Arena.

On the other side of the same bracket at the Jags has #6 North Texas opening at 2:30pm against #11 UL-Lafayette. The winner will then advance to play #3 seed Western Kentucky on Saturday. The winner will then face the winner of the other side of the bracket in the semi-final game on Sunday.

Softball

After dropping only their second game of the season, to #1 ranked Alabama on Thursday, the Lady Jaguar softball team turned around and swept through the Magic City Classic Tournament in Birmingham Alabama this weekend. The Jags defeated Murray State twice, the first 1-0 on Friday then again on Saturday 8-6. They then defeated UAB 8-2 in their second game on Saturday. Then they capped off the weekend by defeating Samford 4-0 on Sunday for a 4-game sweep of the weekend.

Third baseman Haley Fagan took a 1-0 pitch and drove it over the center field wall for a grand-slam to lift the Jags over Samford on Sunday.

Both Julie Moss and Brittany Campbell were named to the All-Tournament Team with Farish Beard named Co-Most Valuable Pitcher and Brittany Fowler named Most Valuable Player of the Tournament.

The Jags will host Nicholls State on Wednesday. The Lady Jags defeated Nicholls 7-1 earlier this season in Louisiana.

The Lady Jags are 17-2 overall this season. Next weekend they will travel to Long Beach California for the Long Beach State Invitational where they will face UC-Santa Barbara, Idaho State, UCLA, Utah and the host Long Beach State.

Once they return from that tournament, they will have the week off before hosting Louisiana-Lafayette over the weekend to open their Sun Belt schedule.

Baseball

The Jaguar lost their first game of the season on the road in Charleston, South Carolina on Friday night to College of Charleston by a score of 12-2.

The Jags then rebounded in the second game to win it 3-0 but then fell 2-3 on Sunday to get only their second loss of the season.

The Jags are 10-2 on the season and will return to action against Nicholls State on Tuesday in Thibodaux, Louisiana with a 6:30pm first pitch. They then return home to host Southern Miss on wednesday for another 6:30pm first pitch.

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