SFA basketball teams return to the hardwood Tuesday night

2021 SFA basketball practice (KTRE)
2021 SFA basketball practice (KTRE)(KTRE Sports)
Published: Nov. 8, 2021 at 9:54 PM CST
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NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - The SFA basketball squads will tip off their first seasons in the Western Athletic Conference on Tuesday night.

The men will be at home against LSU-Alexandria while the women will be in the Alamo City against UT-San Antonio.

Last year the men finished the season 16-5. The team had several games canceled due to COVID-19 and missed the postseason due to an NCAA APR penalty from faulty reporting by former athletic department employees. This year they are picked third in the WAC’s coaches poll and second in the media poll.

“We need to play five versus somebody else versus [our] 5 versus [our] 5,” head coach Kyle Keller said. “We have been banging up pretty good. Looking forward to hitting someone with a different jersey than our own. It will be good to be rooting for ourselves. It will be an exciting night.”

The biggest thing going for the team is the return of four starters. The only starter missing from last season is Cam Johnson who headed overseas for professional basketball.

“We have had some injuries but we are getting guys back,” Keller said. “It is funny how once the games start the injuries go away. Everyone just seems ready to play.”

Following the opener against LSUA, the ‘Jacks will host Mary Hardin-Baylor on Thursday night and South Dakota State Sunday afternoon.

The women are coming off of their best season in a decade, making it to the NCAA National Tournament. The Ladyjacks almost played the role of Cinderella perfectly, forcing Georgia Tech to overtime in the first round.

SFA’s dominating success from the Southland should be fun to watch as they transition into a league where they should have tough competition from California Baptist. SFA will have three all-conference selections on the court with Stephanie Visscher, Zya Nugent and Aiyana Johnson. the team will need to fill in the roll left vacant by Marrissa Banfield and East Texas Bri Mitchell sould very well have a break out season. Also look to see more growth from Avery Brittingham.

The Ladyjacks will play five games in a twelve day span to open the season inclusing games against UTSA, Houston and Texas A&M.

“We are going to get tested early but we feel like we have the roster to do it and I am excited to see how they handle the schedule we put in front of them,” head coach Mark Kellogg said.

The men’s opener will tip off in Nacogdoches at 6:30 p.m. If you cannot attend it will be streamed on ESPN+. The women will tip off at 5 p.m. Their game will be streamed on CUSA.TV.

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