January 21, 2018

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Lions Travel to Lamar for Southland Road Opener

HAMMOND, La. – The Southeastern Louisiana football team will open the road portion of its Southland Conference schedule on Saturday, traveling to Beaumont, Texas for a 7 p.m. contest at league foe Lamar at Provost Umphrey Stadium.

 

The game between the Lions (1-2, 1-0 Southland) and the host Cardinals (0-3, 0-1 Southland) will be televised on ESPN3. Fans can also listen live on the Southeastern Sports Radio Network, which includes KSLU-FM (90.9), Kajun 107.1 FM, The Highway 104.7 FM and WFPR-AM (1400), as well as via the TuneIn Radio app or online at www.LionSports.net/listenlive.

 

Southeastern is coming off its first win of the season, as the Lions opened league play with a 34-24 victory over Northwestern State last Saturday. SLU racked up 539 yards of total offense in the win, as senior Justin Alo threw for 251 yards and three touchdowns with senior Brandon Acker (four catches, 90 yards, 2 TD) and junior Juwan Dickey (4-96-1 TD) serving as his top targets.

 

The Southeastern offensive attack was balanced, as senior Rasheed Harrell rushed for a team-high 124 yards, while Alo pitched in with 91 yards on the ground. The Lion defense forced three turnovers. Junior Javon Tillman led the way with an interception and a forced fumble that was recovered by junior Max Lyons. Junior Ryan Sigers hustled to strip NSU running back Chris Jones and made the recovery, ending a promising Demon drive.

 

“We certainly could play better and we’ll need to play better than we did (versus Northwestern State),” Southeastern head coach Ron Roberts said. “But, it was big for our team to get our first win, especially versus an in-state conference opponent. It provide our players with a big boost in confidence.”

 

Southeastern will be facing a Lamar team that had a bye last week after facing one of the nation’s toughest schedules in the opening weeks of the season. The Cardinals are looking for their first win of the season after defeats to three nationally-ranked opponents – No. 16 Coastal Carolina, No. 6 Houston and No. 3 Sam Houston State.

 

“We’re facing another very good football team this week,” Roberts said. “They have a lot of talent on both sides of the ball, led by their tailback Kade Harrington. It will be a good matchup Saturday and it’s going to come down to which team is most consistent.”

 

Alo will make his third start under center for the Lions and the offense has shown a spark since he took over as the starting quarterback. The Carson, California native has thrown for 620 yards and five touchdowns this season, as Acker (13-291-3 TD) and Dickey (9-184-2 TD) have emerged as a vital receiving threat. Harrell leads the Lions with 171 rushing yards, followed closely by senior Kaelyn Henderson, who has totaled 146 yards.

 

The Lion offense will be facing a Lamar defense that has allowed 41.3 points per game against a daunting schedule. Xavier Bethany leads the Cardinals with 32 tackles and two interceptions.

 

On offense, Harrington is recognized as FCS’ premier running back. The reigning Southland Conference Player of the Year has rushed for 306 yards and two touchdowns through the season’s first two games. Andrew Allen (222 yards, two touchdowns) and Carson Earp (168 yards) have split time under center with Allen slated to get the start on Saturday. Marcus Daggs (11-81) and Zae Giles (9-119-1 TD) are the top pass threats for the Cardinals.

 

The Lion defense has yielded 37.7 points and 428.7 yards per game entering Saturday’s game. Tillman leads the team with 27 tackles, followed by Sigers (21), Lyons (21), junior Torrance Mosley (20) and junior Lee Spight (19).

 

The Lions are looking to start 2-0 in Southland Conference play for the fifth straight season. Southeastern has an 8-3 advantage in the all-time series versus Lamar and has won the last four meetings with the Cardinals.

 

Following Saturday’s game, Southeastern will return home to host McNeese at 6 p.m. in Strawberry Stadium. The game will be televised on Cox Sports Television and on ESPN3 outside of the Cox Sports viewing area. Fans can also hear the game on the Southeastern Sports Radio Network, via the TuneIn Radio app and on www.LionSports.net, where live stats will also be available.

 

The SLU-McNeese game will be Southeastern’s annual Geaux Pink game dedicated to raising breast cancer awareness. In conjunction with game week, fans can visit either of the Hammond Raising Cane’s on Monday, Oct. 4 and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center.

 

The first 300 Southeastern students in attendance for the McNeese game will receive free t-shirts courtesy of Southeastern Athletics Marketing and Promotions.

About Andy Bryson 594 Articles
Founder of Louisiana Gridiron Football and football coach

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