SFA Rolls Past Bears
Jan. 14, 2009
CONWAY, Ark. - Stephen F. Austin held Central Arkansas to just nine field goals in the second half to turn what was a close game early into a 72-55 win Wednesday night in the Farris Center. Senior center Matt Kingsley led the Lumberjacks in scoring for the third straight game as he poured in 16 points and pulled down 11 rebounds for his second double-double of the season.
The win moves SFA to 10-4 on the season and 2-0 in Southland Conference play. Central Arkansas fell to 7-8 overall and 0-2 in the SLC.
Kingsley was one of four Lumberjacks to reach double digits. Senior forward Nick Shaw hit a season-high 14 points and finished just short of a double-double when he fouled out late with eight rebounds. Senior forward Josh Alexander added 13 points and six rebounds, and junior guard Girod Adams finished with 12 points.
Nine of Adams' points came in the second half, and he gave the Lumberjacks the boost they needed to separate themselves from UCA on a critical two-possession sequence. Adams staked SFA to a 13-point lead at the 12:54 mark when he canned a three from the corner, then ripped off a steal on the sideline and raced down court for a layup. Adams was fouled hard on the play and converted the free throw for a 50-37 Lumberjack advantage that was their largest lead of the night at that point. The Bears never got closer than 11 after that sequence of plays, and SFA led by as many as 20 down the stretch.
Adams was 2-for-4 from 3-point range, joining Nick Shaw as the only `Jacks to connect from downtown. SFA shot 43.6 percent from the field, while holding Central Arkansas to a 31-percent effort in the second half and 35.1 percent for the game. The Bears were just 1-of-11 on 3-pointers and didn't connect from long range in the second half.
SFA trailed early, as the `Jacks got out to a 27-percent shooting effort over the game's first 10 minutes. But the Lumberjacks went to the basket late in the period and hit the glass for seven offensive boards. SFA improved its shooting percentage to 42.9 by the end of the half, led by a 5-for-9 effort from Kingsley.
Kingsley also led the charge on the boards, pulling down five offensive rebounds in the first half and tying Shaw for the team lead with seven total. Kingsley's 13 first-half points led all players at the break.
SFA outrebounded the Bears, 17-15, in the first half. UCA's Brian Marks, the No. 2 rebounder in the SLC coming into the game, played just two minutes and had only one board in the opening period. The Bears shot 39.3 percent from the field in the first half.
The Lumberjacks finished with a 35-34 edge on the boards.
Sophomore guard Eddie Williams finished with nine points, three rebounds and three assists. Junior point guard Eric Bell added three assists. Two games after setting a new career-high with five blocked shots against Jarvis Christian, Kingsley put up four rejections against the Bears. Senior center Benson Akpan added four points and two blocked shots, as SFA finished with eight team blocks.
Mitch Rueter scored 13 points to lead Central Arkansas. Marks finished with eight points and pulled down nine second-half rebounds to lead the team with 10. Marcus Pillow and Chris Brown added 10 points apiece.
SFA will return to play Saturday when the Lumberjacks host Nicholls State. The game against the Colonels is set for a 6 p.m. start from Johnson Coliseum.
-- SFA --