SFA Jacks and Ladyjacks sweep Incarnate Word in Nac

Local Sports

NACOGDOCHES, Texas – With all due respect to Rance Cole, it’s safe to say his name has not been featured too prominently on opposing scouting reports throughout the 2018-19 season.

There’s a strong chance that may change following the events of Saturday night. 

Giving the ‘Jacks the spark they needed after a difficult two-game stretch, the Coldspring, Texas, product came off the bench and poured in a career-high 14 points to help SFA end a two-game skid with a dominant 81-54 home victory over Incarnate Word Saturday night. 

Kevon Harris amassed a game-high 20 points while Shannon Bogues added 18 for SFA who moved into sole possession of sixth place in the Southland Conference standings with four regular season games remaining.

FIRST HALF
• Incarnate Word’s Christian Peevy notched his only two points of the game early on when his layup opened the Southland battle. 
• After that, it didn’t take long for the ‘Jacks – and Cole – to assert their dominance over the league’s cellar dwellers. Cole laced the first of his two three-pointers 2:57 in to hand the home team
its first lead of the game. That long ball represented the middle portion of a 6-0 run for SFA. Mitchell Seraille – who put forth an excellent 12-point, six-rebound effort off the bench – capped the run with a layup. 
• The Cardinals, however, answered with a 9-4 spurt of their own to take their last lead of the game. Augustine Ene, who led the way with a 17-point effort off the bench, scored the last four points for the visitors during that span and gave the Cardinals an 11-10 edge with his layup at the 13:30 mark.
• From there, SFA caught fire from long range in order to start a game-changing 19-7 run that put the home team in the driver’s seat for good. Bogues, John Comeaux, Cole and Harris each drained a triple during that surge while Harris capped the run with a fast break layup that pushed the hosts’ edge to 29-18 with 5:38 left. 
• Dwight Murray trimmed the ‘Jacks’ lead to single digits with a three-pointer of his own following Harris’ fast break layup, bur shortly thereafter SFA hit the jets. The ‘Jacks concluded the frame on a 12-3 surge and opened up a lead as large as 20 points (41-21) after Cole connected on a fast-break layup with 41 ticks left.
• Ene’s three-pointer with 28 seconds remaining in the half represented the Cardinals’ lone field goal make in the last 5:19 of the frame. 

SECOND HALF
• Firmly in control of things, the ‘Jacks never let their lead dip below 13 points throughout the second half. Nathan Bain started the final 20-minute segment with a triple to push SFA’s margin back to 20 but Incarnate Word answered with a 9-2 run that cut the edge to 46-33 with 15:49 left. 
• The ‘Jacks’ knockout punch came in the form of a 16-2 run that spanned nearly five minutes. Bogues started the surge with a triple but in all five ‘Jacks contributed points through that stretch. Once the dust had settled, SFA had upped its advantage from 46-33 to 62-35 with 9:30 left. 
• SFA’s massive advantage ballooned to 34, 77-43, with 4:14 left in the deciding frame when Bogues hit Harris who converted a mid-range jumper. 

KEY PERFORMERS/STATISTICS OF NOTE
• Enjoying a fine shooting night, the ‘Jacks drilled 55.8-percent (29-of-52) of their field goal tries in the victory while converting 73.7-percent (14-of-19) of their foul shots. 
• The ‘Jacks turned 21 Incarnate Word throwaways into 24 points to improve to 10-1 all-time against the Cardinals. That record includes a perfect 6-0 showing in Nacogdoches. 
• Along with his 14 points, Cole also came up with a game-high three steals. For the game, he went 6-of-8 from the field and 2-of-4 from long range. 
• Antoine Smith turned in 12 points for Incarnate Word who lost its 12th-straight game. 
• Edward Ruiz – who joined the team this season as a walk-on – played the final two minutes of the game. It was Ruiz’s second appearance of the season and his first of the 2019 calendar year. 

COMING UP NEXT
• In another pivotal Southland Conference clash, the ‘Jacks head to Conway, Ark., for a Wednesday night showdown with Central Arkansas. The Bears are just two games back of SFA in the league standings and will be hoping to put an end to a seven-game skid when they take on the ‘Jacks inside the Farris Center. The Southland Digital Network will carry the game nationwide once it begins at 7:00 p.m.

-SFA-

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