It’s win or go home in postseason play beginning today for the LSUS men’s and women’s basketball teams and the Bossier Parish Community College Cavaliers.
The Red River Athletic Conference men’s basketball champion Pilots (24-7, seeded fifth in the 16-team Naismith Quadrant of the 64-team tournament) tip off the action involving local teams in the NAIA’s Alexandria Bracket of the NAIA Opening Round, meeting No. 12 Thomas (Ga.) University (18-8) at 3 p.m.
The Pilots were 17th in the last NAIA Top 25 poll late last month. Woodlawn High School product Jalen Brooks, a senior transfer from Southern Arkansas, was named Player of the Year, Newcomer of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year on the All-RRAC team announced recently.
In the ensuing contest at the Rapides Parish Coliseum – site of last weekend’s RRAC Tournament, when both LSUS teams fell in championship games – the 13th-seeded Lady Pilots (24-7) play No. 4 Vanguard (Cal.) at 5:30. Vanguard is 21-7 and ranked 14th nationally.
BPCC has a 6 p.m. rematch of a Dec. 10 non-conference 56-53 overtime loss at Angelina to open the first round of the Region XIV Tournament hosted by Tyler Junior College. Both teams are 14-15 overall.
The Cavaliers have three double-digit scorers in an offense averaging 81 points. Kendrick Delahoussaye tops the list at 14.3 per game and contributes a 2.7 assists average. Christian Caldwell scores 12.4 per game and leads the rebounders with a 7.2 average. D’Marcus Hill is scoring 11.9 per game.
Brooks – who led the league with averages of 23.9 points (fifth nationally) and 11.2 rebounds (third nationally) along with ranking third in the RRAC in blocks and fifth in steals — seems like a one-man wrecking machine, but all five Pilots starters earned All-RRAC recognition.
Guard Jordan DeCuir was Freshman of the Year and a second-team all-conference pick, along with junior Calvin Carpenter. Tyler Washington and Stacey Thomas were honorable mention All-RRAC.
The Lady Pilots also had five players honored on the all-conference team. Destanee Roblow was a first-team selection for the conference runner-ups. Tiarra Tillison was Freshman of the Year.
Derrica Gilbert, a junior, was a second-team all-conference pick while Alexis Brown, another junior, made the third team along with classmate Tahja Smith.
Tillison was the LSUS women’s pick on the RRAC Champions of Character roster while Noah Jonker represented the Pilots.
REGION XIV MBB
FIRST-ROUND PAIRINGS | Tuesday’s games
1 p.m. — (8) Tyler (15-14) v. (9) Navarro (15-14)
3:00 — (5) CBC (19-11) v. (12) Paris (10-20)
6:00 — (7) Angelina (14-15) v. (10) BPCC (14-15)
8:00 — (6) Kilgore (19-10) v. (11) Lamar State (12-18)
NAIA First round pairings
1 p.m. – (4) Huntington (Ind.) vs. (13) Pikeville (Ky.)
3:00 – (5) LSU-Shreveport vs. (12) Thomas (Ga.)
5:30 – Vanguard (Calif.) vs. LSU-Shreveport
7:30 – Texas Wesleyan vs. Brewton-Parker (Ga.)