A&M-Commerce Lions at Abilene Christian Wildcats
Tuesday, December 4 • 7:30 p.m.
Moody Coliseum • Abilene, Texas
Records: A&M-Commerce (5-2, 0-0 LSC); Abilene Christian (4-2, 1-1 LSC)
A&M-Commerce Lions vs. Angelo State Rams
Saturday, December 8 • 4 p.m.
The Field House • Commerce, Texas
Records: A&M-Commerce (5-2, 0-0 LSC); Angelo State (2-4, 0-2 LSC)
Following an eight-day layoff, A&M-Commerce returns to the court to open up its 2012-13 Lone Star Conference schedule. The Lion open up LSC play on the road, traveling to Abilene for possibly the final time, taking on Abilene Christian Tuesday, December 4th. A&M-Commerce then returns home to welcome Angelo State to the Field House for a 4 p.m. tip on Saturday, December 8th.
Lions on the Web
Stay up to date with every Lion basket this week as A&M-Commerce opens up Lone Star Conference play against Abilene Christian and Angelo State. Live streaming video of both games are available through LionAthletics.com with the home game against Angelo State, powered by Stretch Internet, available on a subscription basis at $7.95 per game with season passes also available. KETR 88.9 FM will carry both games live with Charlie Chitwood, the "Voice of the Lions," on the call and will be streamed online at KETR.org. Live stats are available at LionAthletics.com and Twitter followers receiving in-game updates @Lion_Athletics.
Scouting the Wildcats
2012-13: 4-2 overall, 1-1 Lone Star Conference, 3-1 home
Last Three Games: W vs. Dallas Baptist (75-73), W at West Texas A&M (59-58), L vs. Eastern New Mexico (62-60)
Head Coach: Joe Golding (Abilene Christian, 1999). Second season at Abilene Christian (15-18, .455)
• #5 Eric Lawton (Sr., G): 94 pts. (15.7 ppg), 45.5 FG%, 48.4 3FG%, 22 reb. (3.7 rpg), 22 ast., 3 blk.
• #11 Elliott Lloyd (Sr., G): 85 pts. (14.2 ppg), 40.3 FG%, 33.3 3FG%, 76.5 FT%, 17 ast., 9 stl.
• #33 Steven Werner (Sr., C): 70 pts. (11.7 ppg), 52.9 FG%, 64.0 FT%, 47 reb. (7.8 rpg), 7 blk.
• #32 Cornelius Cammock (Jr., F): 54 pts. (9.0 ppg), 62.9 FG%, 76.9 FT%, 30 reb. (5.0 rpg), 5 blk.
• #3 Parker Wentz (Fr., G): 53 pts. (8.8 ppg), 38.5 FG%, 100.0 FT%, 18 (3.0 rpg), 12 ast., 14 stl.
Synopsis: Abilene Christian opened up the 2012-13 season with a 3-1 non-conference record, including splitting the season series with Dallas Baptist while notching home victories over York and Sul Ross State. The Wildcats opened up Lone Star Conference play with a 59-58 victory at 18th-ranked West Texas A&M, but a late lay-up by Eastern New Mexico helped the Greyhounds to a 62-60 at Moody Coliseum Saturday afternoon.
Series Information: The series with Abilene Christian is A&M-Commerce's second-longest running current series in program history as the Wildcats and Lions meet for the 96th time Tuesday evening at Moody Coliseum. A&M-Commerce leads the all-time series 56-39, including last year's 75-72 come-from-behind victory in Abilene that kept the Lions' postseason hopes alive. The Lions have won eight of the last 12 meetings between the two long-time rivals as head coach Sam Walker is 12-7 against the Wildcats.
Scouting the Rams
2012-13: 2-4 overall, 0-2 Lone Star Conference, 0-2 road
Last Three Games: L at St. Mary's (84-76), L at Eastern New Mexico (76-67), L vs. West Texas A&M (73-44). Angelo State hosts Tarleton State Wednesday (Dec. 5) before visiting Commerce
Head Coach: Fred Rike (West Texas A&M, 1989). Seventh season at Angelo State (87-84, .509)
• #11 Chris Talkington (Jr., F): 83 pts. (16.6 ppg), 42.6 FG%, 50.0 3FG%, 85.7 FT%, 35 reb. (7.0 rpg)
• #12 Jovan Austin (Fr., G): 75 pts. (12.5 ppg), 46.3 FG%, 25.0 3FG%, 88.0 FT%, 19 ast., 10 stl.
• #4 Antonio Dye (Sr., G): 62 pts. (12.4 ppg), 36.4 FG%, 41.7 3FG%, 60.0 FT%, 24 reb. (4.8 rpg), 14 ast.
• #15 Dakota Rawls (So., F): 50 pts. (8.3 ppg), 40.4 FG%, 29.4 3FG%, 87.5 FT%, 31 reb. (5.2 rpg)
• #3 Bryan Hammond (Jr., G): 36 pts. (6.0 ppg), 22.9 FG%, 66.7 FT% 15 reb. (2.5 rpg), 15 ast., 6 stl.
Synopsis: Angelo State opened up the season with a pair of non-conference victories, defeating Lubbock Christian and Arlington Baptist at home. Since then, the Rams have dropped four-straight, including a 76-67 loss at Eastern New Mexico and a 73-44 loss to 18th-ranked West Texas A&M at home Saturday to open up Lone Star Conference play.
Series Information: Saturday's game marks the 82nd meeting between A&M-Commerce and Angelo State with the Lions holding a slim 41-40 edge in the all-time series. The last meeting between the two rivals was a memorable one as the Lions held off the Rams 83-78 in the regular season finale at the Field House to secure the eight seed in the LSC tournament. The Lions are 8-3 in the last 11 games against the Rams, including winning five of the last six in Commerce, as head coach Sam Walker has posted a 10-8 record against Angelo State.
Whitley Taking Control in Senior Campaign
Senior forward Preston Whitley is beginning to emerge as one of the Lions' top scoring threats in his final season. The 2009-10 Lone Star Conference Freshman of the Year, Whitley has scored in double figures in each of the last four games for A&M-Commerce, highlighted by his season-high 19-point performance in the win over Southern Arkansas where he shot 7-of-9 from the floor and 5-of-6 from the free throw line. He has also made his presence felt in the paint, pulling down eight or more rebounds in each of the last three games, including 10 against UT-Permian Basin when he notched his first double-double of the season.
Walker Finding Scoring Groove
Junior Devondrick Walker, who came on strong at the end of the 2011-12 season, is finding his scoring groove once again. Walker reeled off a season-high 20 points in the win over Southern Arkansas, matching the team-high 20 points recorded by Andrew Davis in the win over Dallas Baptist. Walker has reached double figures in three games this year, including notching 17 points in the win against UT-Permain Basin on Nov. 17. He is one of four Lions to average over 10 points a game and is second on the team in free throw percentage, hitting 82.4 percent of his attempts.
Wooten Making Name For Himself
Junior transfer Tyrie Wooten has started to make a name for himself as a crowd favorite in his first season at A&M-Commerce. Wooten finished with nine points in the victory over Southern Arkansas, hitting 3-of-4 of his three-point attempts, including a pair of back-to-back threes in the closing minutes to help complete the A&M-Commerce comeback. Wooten has scored in double figures three times this year, highlighted by a 14-point performance against Ouachita Baptist on Nov. 20, and leads the Lions in both three-point percentage (42.9%) and steals (14).
Davis Remains Solid For Lions
Senior forward Andrew Davis has remained one of the top Lion threats through the first month of the 2012-13 season, ranking first on the team in rebounds (8.4 per game) and second in scoring (11.4 per game). Davis has scored 10 or more points in five games this season, including 20 in the win over Dallas Baptist, and has pulled down double-digit rebounds in four games, including 11 in the first three contests of the season to give the senior three-straight double-doubles.
Lions Strong Against Arkansas Opponents
A&M-Commerce has found a great deal of success against teams from the state of Arkansas in recent years, a streak that continued with the 74-67 victory over Southern Arkansas last Monday. The Lions have won their last 13 games against teams from the Natural State, dating back to the 2008-09 season. During that run, the Lions are 4-0 against the Muleriders, 3-0 against Henderson State and Ouachita Baptist while posting a 1-0 mark against Arkansas-Fort Smith, Arkansas-Monticello and Harding. In his career against teams from the state of Arkansas, head coach Sam Walker has posted a mark of 26-9 (.743), highlighed by a 13-2 record against the Muleriders.
Change of Pace From 2011-12
One of the reasons for the success of A&M-Commerce in the early portion of 2012-13 has been its ability to take down teams from the Lone Star state. In 2011-12, the Lions did not record their first victory against a team from the state of Texas until a 75-72 win at Abilene Christian on February 22nd as A&M-Commerce posted just two wins over Lone Star state teams on the year. So far in 2012-13, the Lions are 3-2 against Texas teams, notching a pair of victories over UT-Permian Basin and an overtime thriller against Dallas Baptist on Nov. 14. A&M-Commerce will get a chance to see just how far its come as the Lions' next three games are all against teams from the Lone Star state (Abilene Christian, Angelo State, Dallas Baptist).
A&M-Commerce steps out of Lone Star Conference play for the final time on the season, embarking on a three-game road swing to close out the 2012 calendar year. The Lions will face a stiff challenge, taking on the three teams they defeated earlier this year at the Field House. A&M-Commerce visits Dallas Baptist for a 7 p.m. tip on Saturday, December 15. The Lions then head to Arkansas for back-to-back showdowns, taking on Ouachita Baptist in Arkadelphia on Tuesday, December 18, followed by a visit to Magnolia to battle Southern Arkansas on Wednesday, December 19.
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