Jaguars Fall In SBC Championship Game, Falls Short Of NCAA Tournament

March 11, 2009 · Filed Under Uncategorized · 1 Comment 

Several things lead to a rough first half for South Alabama. WKU begin the game with an 11-0 advantage and eventually see their lead swell to as much as 15 with 5:58 to play in the first half. The first half saw the worst of the Jaguars with plenty of turnovers and an inability to get a defensive rebound allowing the Hilltoppers to shoot two, three and sometimes four times down the court. Then in addition to the sloppy play, WKU took advantage of USA’s spotty 3-point defense.

DeAndre Coleman, who was still suffering from a stomach illness, took the Jaguars onto his back and kept them in the game for the first half. At halftime, the Jaguars were only down by ten points, 35-25.

The second half saw the Jaguars come out of the locker room determined to try to win the game, knowing that their only opportunity to get a bid to the NCAA Tournament was by winning this game.

Domonic Tilford came out and drained an early 3-pointer to cut the hilltopper lead under ten points for the first time since it was 9-0. Add a DeAndre Coleman layup and another Tilford trey and the jaguars were within four points with 16:29 left in the game.

Sherrer connected with Coleman for another layup and a foul on Magley of the hilltoppers. Coleman connected on the free throw to get the Jags within one points of the lead 37-36 with 15:48 left in the game. Then Coleman gave South Alabama their first lead of the game 41 seconds later on a tip-in.

Tilford would extend the Jaguar lead to 43-39 on a three pointer with 12:17 left. However the lead was short lived after a layup and a trey by the hilltoppers retook the lead with 10:58 left in the game at 44-43.

The Jaguars would tie the game up one more time at 46 on a DeAndre Coleman free throw with 8:34 left in the game. However the Jags ran out of fuel and could not keep pace with the hilltoppers. Each time the Jags would start to get close, Orlando Mendez-Valdez would drain a 3-pointer. The Jaguars were within four points with 2:52 left but free throw shooting, turnovers and shots that would not fall would end the game. The final score was 64-56.

Brandon Davis would lead all scorers, coming off the bench to score 27 points on 11-16 shooting, 5-6 from the free throw line and adding 9 rebounds. Domonic Tilford, the Jaguars leading scorer, could only score 12 points on 4-10 shooting, 4-6 from beyond the arc.

A.J. Slaughter would lead the hilltoppers in scoring with 18 points on 5-14 shooting, 2-8 from 3-point range and 6-6 from the free throw line. Steffphon Pettigrew added 15 points and Orlando Mendez-Valdez added 10 points and eight assists. Mendez-Valdez only hit two shots from the floor, but they were both 3-pointers to seal the game.

The Jaguars shot 50% from the floor for the game compared to 42% for the hilltoppers. The Jags shot 50% from 3-point range while the hilltoppers shot 35%. The Jags went to the charity stripe 8 times and made five of them while the hilltoppers made all 14 attempts.

South Alabama will have to wait and see if they receive an invitation to play in the NIT Tournament.

The seniors DeAndre Coleman, Domonic Tilford, Brandon Davis, B.J. Ford, Ronald Douglas and Jamal Harris played a great season for the Jaguars. They fought hard through injuries, a tough last second losing streak and illness to have a good season. Hopefully they will go on and do good in whatever comes of them after their time at South Alabama.


South Alabama Men Advances To Quarterfinals With Win Over Troy

March 9, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

After losing both meetings to the Trojans during the regular season, South Alabama finally found a way to win at the perfect time. With strong performances by key players, including a very visibly sick DeAndre Coleman, and Troy’s inability to hit clutch shots in the final minute of the game lead to the 78-75 victory.

The game started rough for the Jaguars with the Trojans hitting two 3-pointers and four missed shots by the Jags in the first 70 seconds of the game to jump out to an 8-0 lead. Coach Arrow quickly called a 30 second timeout to regroup his team.

At the 14:54 mark of the first half the Trojans again stretched their lead to eight points 16-8 but the Jaguars would start to come alive finally. The Jags would take the lead with a 10-1 run over 2:36. But the Jaguars could not go ahead by more than a single point, trading the lead several times in the first half. However, Troy would eventually regain a narrow lead and go into the locker room up by four, 41-37.

The second half would see more close play with the lead changing hands a couple times before USA was able to push out to a four point lead with 14:37 left in the second half. However that lead would be short lived and a few more lead changes would occurr before USA would take the lead for the final time of the game at the 11:31 mark.

USA would go out to their largest lead of the game at eight points with 3:57 remaining but they could not put Troy away for good. Ronald Douglas would get fouled and he would make both of his free throws at the 2:13 mark and DeAndre Coleman would be fouled and make both of his free throw attempts at the :34 second mark, but the Jaguar free throw shooting would be abysmal for the rest of the game.

After Coleman’s free throws the Jaguars were up 77-73 and a potentially costly fouled by Bryan Sherrer allowed Troy to pull back within two points with the clock stopped. The inbounds play saw DeAndre Coleman get fouled by Kenny Ware of Troy but Coleman missed his first attempt but sunk his second to give the Jaguars a three point lead with 28 seconds to go at 78-75.

In the final 28 seconds there were three missed shots by Troy and four missed free throws by the Jaguars. However its still a win for the Jaguars.

Troy’s Brandon Hazzard had a game high of 22 points going 8-20 from the floor, 4-12 from 3-point range and 2-4 from the free-throw line. Michael Vogler and Richard Delk both added 12 for the Trojans.

Domonic Tilford scored 20 points to lead the Jaguars going 7-20 from the floor, 2-8 from 3-point range and 4-4 from the free throw line. LaShun Watson added a career high 18 points. A sick DeAndre Coleman scored 17 points. Finally Brandon Davis scored 11 points and 12 rebounds for a double-double.

The Quarterfinal games for the Men’s Bracket will have #1 Western Kentucky squaring off against #4 North Texas at 6:30pm then the #6 Jaguars will take on #2 UALR at 9:00. With two more victories the Jaguars will automatically receive a berth in the NCAA Tournament.


Jags Punch Their Ticket To Hot Springs Arkansas With 62-60 Win

March 6, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

Two Jaguars ended the night with double-doubles to lead USA to their fourth victory in a row and sixth in the last seven games. USA improves to 17-11 overall and 10-7 in the Sun Belt Conference.

ULM scored first in the game on two free-throws but USA would keep it close throughout the first four and a half minutes of the game. But with 15:25 left in the opening half with the Jags down by one at 8-9 they would go on a 18-4 run over the next seven plus minutes to take a 13 point lead with 7:47 left in the opening half. But ULM would slowly chip away at the Jaguar lead until they were within three points with 43 seconds to go in the half. A tip-in by DeAndre Coleman with time expiring took USA into the locker room with a five point advantage, 35-30.

USA’s lead would get out to as much as seven points in the opening minutes of the second half until a short 6-0 run over three minutes put the Jaguars back out to a double digit lead, 46-35.

USA and ULM would trade baskets over the next seven minutes until USA would finally push out to a 15 point lead with just under eight minutes left. Over the next four minutes they would methodically close the gap to seven, 63-56, with 3:48 to go in the game but that would be as close as they could get in the final minutes. A few traded baskets later and the Jags would win by the same margin 67-60.

DeAndre Coleman would lead all scorers with 21 points on 9-13 shooting, missing his only 3-point attempt and going 3-8 from the free-throw line but added 10 rebounds for a double-double while still blocking three shots. Brandon Davis would add 16 points and 14 rebounds for another double-double for USA. Domonic Tilford was the only other USA player in double-digits scoring with 11. Ronald Douglas also blocked four shots to extend his streak of consecutive games with a blocked shot to 12.

Louisiana-Monroe had three players in double digits: Lawrence Gilbert scored 14 and Malcolm Thomas and Kenneth Averette both scored 11.

The Jags shot 47% from the floor compared to ULM’s 35% and the Jags out rebounded them 41-34. USA outscored them in the paint 42-20, off turnovers 15-10, and fast break points 8-4.

When asked about the teams recent success Coach Arrow answered, “It’s defense. Our guards have bought into better guarding their man. Before, all of their guys were getting to the hole, and our guys were shot-blocking. Now, they’re doing a better job of containing, knowing that if they get by our post is there to shot-block. What Ronald Douglas does for this team, he alters so many shots. It’s good to know when they do get by our guards, we have the shot-blockers back there to guard the hole.”

The Jaguars regular season closer is scheduled for Saturday in Troy, Alabama with a 7:30pm tip-off.


Jaguars Win In Impressive Fashion Over FAU

February 15, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

The Jaguars showed what they can do when they are hitting on all cylinders. They never trailed during the game and shot over 67% from the floor for the contest in their fourth consecutive home victory to get them above .500 for the season in the Sun Belt Conference.

Throughout the first ten minutes of the first half, FAU would not let USA get too far from their sights and would close the gap to within one point. But with a 15-3 run the Jags would never look back for the rest of the half gaining a 15 point advantage several times in the final four minutes of the half, going into the locker room up 46-31.

The second half would see both teams trading baskets but USA would eventually inch out to a 21 point lead at 60-39 at the 14:13 mark in the second half. FAU would not give up, battling back with a 15-5 run in just under four minutes to close the lead to 11 points, 65-54.

FAU and the Jaguars would continue trading shots until FAU closed the lead by one more point to 10, 77-67, with 4:48 remaining in the game. But USA would finish the game with a 14-3 run for the final score of 91-70.

Coach Arrow said after the game, “I thought tonight that we went ahead and put them away. We shared the ball really well tonight. Twenty-six assists is super. We executed our plays and in transition. When we took the lead early, our defense got steals, layups and deflections. We played with a lot of energy to start the game.”

Florida Atlantic’s Paul Graham III lead all in scoring with 27 points on 10-22 shooting, going 3-8 from 3-point range and hitting all four of his free-throw attempts. Shavar Richardson added 24 points as well as being the only other player in double-digits for FAU.

Brandon Davis lead the way for the Jags with 23 points on 9-10 shooting from the floor and 5-6 from the free-throw line, he did not attempt any 3-point shots. Domonic Tilford scored 17 points hitting 3 of the Jaguars six 3-pointers for the game. LaShun Watson scored 12 points and had a tie for the most assists for the game with DeAndre Coleman with 7. Bryan Sherrer scored 11 and CJ Garner added 10 points to round out the double digit scorers.

USA as a team has 8 blocks and 13 turnovers compared with FAU’s one block and 9 forced turnovers. USA led with 46 points in the paint to FAU’s 20 and 27 fast break points to FAU’s 2.

The Jaguars are back in action on Thursday when they travel to Middle Tennessee State for a 7pm tip-off against the Blue Raiders who won their previous match-up at the Mitchell Center 82-67. A win against MTSU would move USA over MTSU into 3rd place in the Eastern Division.


USA Win On Buzzer Beating Shot Against FIU

February 13, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

South Alabama finally got to celebrate after a buzzer beating shot this season. Over the previous several weeks, USA have been on the losing end of the last second shot brigade but LaShun Watson nailed a 3-pointer as the clock expired to give the Jaguars a much needed 66-65 win Thursday night at the Mitchell Center.

USA would score first on a Ronald Douglas layup but it would be FIU who would gain the lead for the next three minutes of the game. A jumper by Brandon Davis would tie the game again at the 16:41 mark.

Over the next five minutes a team would get a small lead then the other would come back on a short run to retake a short lead. This was until the Jaguars went on an 11-0 run over a four minute span to firmly take the lead by eight at 25-17 and would not give it up again the rest of the first half. FIU would close the gap to three points with a 3-pointer with 2 seconds left in the first half to go into the locker room down 35-32.

The second half would start with USA shooting 7 for 11 from the floor while holding FIU to only 2 for 10 and taking a 10 point lead in the meantime. USA held a 10 point lead three times in the second half, once at the 11:14 mark, the second at the 9:26 mark and the third at the 5:34 mark.

However the lead would not last with FIU going on a 10-2 run with back-to-back-to-back 3-pointers by Alex Galindo while USA could only muster two free-throws during that stretch. USA was then up 62-60 when CJ Garner was fouled with 1:15 left in the game, he only made one of this two shots. Then a layup by FIU shrunk the lead to one with 1:07 left and FIU called a 30 second time out.

Watson missed a jumper with 43 seconds left that would have put USA up by three points but FIU would come away with the rebound and call another time out with 33 seconds left. Coming off the time out, FIU’s Alex Galindo hit a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left forcing USA to take a time out with 7 seconds left to set up a game tieing or game winning play.

Coach Arrow said after the game, “It was a flare play for (Dominic) Tilford, and Bryan (Sherrer) had enough about him to see they jammed him, but he found LaShun (Watson) and he nailed the shot.”

FIU’s Alex Galindo lead all in scoring with 26 points on 8-15 field goal shooting while hitting 8-11 from 3-point range and both free-throw attempts. Russell Hicks added 15 points and 10 rebounds for a double-double. Tremayne Russell also added 12 points in the losing cause.

LaShun Watson lead USA in scoring with 17 no 7-11 field goal shooting, going 2-2 from the free-throw line and hitting his only attempt at a three for the game at the buzzer. Brandon Davis added 14 points and 11 rebounds for a double-double. Ronald Douglas added another 10 points in the win. Davis’ 10th double-double of his career and leads all active USA players in that category as well as moving into 9th place all-time in rebounding in USA history.

Again, poor free-throw shooting by USA combined with 10-19 3-point shooting by FIU made for a close game.

USA improves to 14-11 for the season and evens their Sun Belt record to 7-7 while FIU falls to 10-17 and 5-9 in the SBC. USA will get a day off before hosting Florida Atlantic on Valentines day with a 7:05pm tip-off at the Mitchell Center.

So go out for an early Valentines Dinner with your special someone and then head over to the Mitchell Center to support your JAGUARS!!

Western Kentucky Proves To Be Too Strong Down The Stretch For The Jaguars

February 9, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

WKU was too strong down the stretch for the Jaguars and won the contest in Bowling Green, 67-59. The game was broadcast on ESPN2 and Coach Arrow said, ““Fans got to see across the country what the Sun Belt is all about. Both teams made a good showing they just got some things done at the end that we didn’t.”

The Hilltoppers jumped out and dominated the first 3:57 of the game by holding them scoreless. WKU then pulled out to a 16-8 lead before they hit a cold streak for the next 4:04 allowing the Jags to tie the game.

The remainder of the first half saw the Hilltoppers pull away towards the end of the half for a 33-26 halftime lead.

Orlando Mendez-Valdez had a hot hand in the first half and that continued in the second half. The Jags pulled within two less than two minutes into the second half but Mendez-Valdez connected on one of his ten 3-point attempts to keep WKU in the lead. However by the 15:55 mark, the Jaguars took the lead, for the first time in the game, on a Ronald Douglas dunk on a pass from Domonic Tilford.

The Jaguars would pull out to their largest lead at five points at the 13:46 mark in the second half. But the Hilltoppers would not give up and would start working their way back.

After a few ties and swapping leads, the two teams would be tied for the last time on a 3-pointer by WKU with 3:47 left in the game at 59. After a timeout by USA, DeAndre Coleman would be whistled for a three second violation and USA would go scoreless for the final 3:47 of the game.

Orlando Mendez-Valdez lead all scorers with 24 on 9-20 shooting while going 6-10 from 3-point range and no free-throw attempts. AJ Slaughter and Steffphon Pettigrew both scored 13 for the Hilltoppers.

DeAndre Coleman lead USA with 13 points while three Jags scored 12: Brandon Davis, Ronald Douglas and Domonic Tilford.

The Hilltoppers record improves to 17-7 and 11-2 in the Sun Belt to stay in first place in the Eastern Division. While USA falls to 13-11 and 6-7 in the Sun Belt to be in 4th place in the Eastern Division.

The Jaguars will host Florida International at the Mitchell Center on Thursday, February 12th with tip-off slated for 7:05pm.

Come out and support your Jaguars!

Jags Win Second Straight Home Game Downing UNT

February 6, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

The Jaguars even their Sun Belt record at 6-6 and improves to 13-10 overall while North Texas drops to 12-10 overall and 5-6 in the conference.

The Jags lead most of the first half after UNT took the lead with the first score of the game. The Jags pulled out to a modest lead but UNT would close the gap to three at halftime, 37-34.

UNT would keep it close in the second half, getting within one point with 14:49 left in the game. The Jags would then go on a 19-3 run to gain an 11 point lead for the second time in the game, the other time was 9:38 mark in the first half.

UNT would then go on a 13-2 run of their own to take the lead for the first time since 25 seconds into the first half. But LaShun Watson would step up and drain two jumpers to score the final four points in the last 1:20 of the game.

Domonic Tilford would lead all scorers with 22 points on 6-15 shooting, also going 4-6 from 3-point range and hitting all six of this free-throws. Brandon Davis added 15 points and LaShun Watson added 14 including the final four of the game.

Ronald Douglas tied his career high with six blocks in the game in his second game back from a shoulder injury. DeAndre Coleman fouled out early in the second half without scoring any points.

North Texas had two scorers in double digits: George Odufuwa and Eric Tramiel both with 14. Tramiel also came down with 13 rebouds for a double-double.

The Jags travel to Western Kentucky for a 1pm tip-off Saturday that will be televised on ESPN2.


Jaguars Break Losing Streak, Down UNO 56-53

February 2, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

This was the fourth consecutive game decided in the final seconds but this time the game went in favor of South Alabama. After having lost three consecutive games on the last possession, it was a huge relief to the Jaguar faithful to be on the winning side of one.

USA lead the entire first half and went into the locker room with a nine point lead. However, in the first five minutes of the second half the Jags would see their lead fizzle away when a trey with 11:38 left in the game would give UNO their first lead of the game.

The game would stay close throughout the rest of the second half with the lead changing hands once more to the Jags and five ties. Jags held the lead at 54-53 with 33 seconds left when a 3-pointer by T.J. Worley missed its mark. DeAndre Coleman gathered in the rebound and UNO was forced to foul. Coleman made both free-throw attempts to cap off the win.

The Jags won even though they shot 30% from the floor compared to 43% for UNO. The Privateers hit 50% of their 3-pointers compared to 44% for the Jags. However, USA went to the free-throw line 24 times making 16 of them compared to UNO’s 13 trips and 7 made shots.

Points in the paint was even with 18 each, pts off turnovers USA 13, UNO 9. Second chance points USA 21 – UNO 7, fast break pts UNO 11 – USA 2, bench scoring USA 16 – UNO 0.

DeAndre Coleman lead the scoring for USA with 16 on 3-8 shooting, making his only 3-point attempt and sinking 9 of 14 free-throw attempts. Brandon Davis came away with a double-double by scoring 13 points on 5-10 shooting and going 3-4 from the free-throw line. He added a career high 16 rebounds, 13 defensive in the game.

Ronald Douglas made his first appearance since Jan. 17. He injured his shoulder during practice and had to sit out to let it heal. He did not score but did come down with four rebounds.

New Orleans T.J.Worley scored 25 points to lead all scorers going 10-19 from the floor, 4-8 from outside the arc and hitting his only free-throw attempt. Kyndall Dykes scored 11 to be the only other UNO player in double digits.

Coach Arrow said after the game, “I think we kept our poise, but the difference in this one was we ran our plays better, we got a couple of easy buckets and when they fouled we made our free-throws.” Arrow also added “Coleman’s second free throw was supposed to be a miss, but we were positioned in the right spots.” as an indicator that this game was meant for them to win.

South Alabama hosts North Texas on Thursday night at the Mitchell Center with tip-off scheduled for 7:05pm.

Come out and support your Jaguars!

Denver Edges USA On Last Second Shot 56-54

January 31, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

This was the third consecutive game where the game was decided in the final seconds and it also marked the third consecutive loss for the Jaguars.

The first half saw Denver shoot 67% from the field and from 3-point range as well as 60% from the free-throw line. While USA struggled only shooting 48% from the field and missing on all six attempts from outside the arc.

Denver had pulled away throughout the first half and went into the locker room with a 37-28 lead.

Defense tightened up for both teams in the second half. Both teams combined to shoot 34% from the floor with both teams suffering long field goal droughts. Denver shot 32% from the floor and only hit one of 11 3-point field goals and 4 of 9 free-throws. USA shot 37% from the field with no attempts at a 3-pointer and hit 12 of 18 free-throws.

The Jags went without a field goal for the final 5:58 of the game. Denver did not convert a shot over a 7:33 span late in the game. But Nate Rohnert hit a lay-up with a mere 5.1 seconds left in the game to break the tie at 54. Denver took a quick timeout so USA set up a quick play to try to tie the game and go into overtime. Coach Arrow said after the game, “The plan was either to go inside to Brandon Davis or Domonic Tilford was going to have the ball. We passed it a little too late.”

Tilford took the shot but it was waved off by the officials. Unsure if he actually got the shot off before the buzzer the officials congregated and talked it over. Eventually going to the game officials to watch a replay of the final shot and determined that, indeed it was too late.

DeAndre Coleman lead all scorers with 17 points on 4-7 shooting and connecting on 9 of 10 free-throws. Brandon Davis added 15 points but was in foul trouble late in the game. Denver had two players in double digits. Nate Rohnert scored 12 and Rob Lewis scored 11.

After the game, Lee Shirvanian talked with Coach Arrow. “I don’t know what to say. I feel bad for the guys. Yeah, we make the key mistakes but we play hard enough to win. We’ve played three games in a row that we’ve lost at the buzzer that we played hard enough to win. It’s got to change…”

Hopefully it will change for the Jags on Saturday when the Mitchell Center will host a double header. The men will take on New Orleans with tip-off set for 2pm and it will also be televised on CSS. The lady Jags also take on New Orleans with tip-off scheduled for about 7:05pm or about 30 minutes after the men’s game concludes.

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