LAKE CHARLES – The first of five straight home basketball games for McNeese State will take place on Thursday when the Cowboys and Cowgirls host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in Southland Conference action.
The Cowgirls (9-6, 2-2) will get things started with a 5:30 tip followed by the Cowboys (5-11, 3-1) at approximately 7:30 at Burton Coliseum. Fans in attendance will have a chance to win great prizes as the doubleheader has been billed as "Bingeaux Night."
Corpus Christi's women's team will enter play 8-7 overall and 1-3 in conference play while riding a two-game losing streak. The men are 6-11 overall but are tied with the Cowboys at 3-1 in the conference standings.
"They have a really good team and coming off a couple of good wins, including a win over preseason favorite Northwestern State," said Cowboys' head coach Dave Simmons. "It's great to be back home for five-in-a-row but we have to make sure we protect our home court."
The teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 1 against Houston Baptist in a twinbill that will be broadcast on ESPN3. Then on Tuesday, McNeese will entertain Nicholls beginning at 5:30 in the first of three straight dates played at the Lake Charles Civic Center.
The Cowgirls will enter Thursday's game coming off a loss at Lamar but glad to be back home where they are 6-1 on the season.
Allison Baggett leads the team and is ranked second in the league in scoring at an 18.2 points per game average. Cecilia Okoye is the only other McNeese player scoring double figures with an 11.4 average.
As a team, McNeese is averaging 66.4 points a game while giving up 65.8. The Cowgirls rank fifth in the league in scoring margin, third in field goal defense, second in rebounding and first in free throw shooting.
AMCC is led in scoring by Jasmine Shaw's 17.5 average.
For the men, the Cowboys are coming off a 74-59 win at Lamar to pick up the team's first Division I road win of the season. McNeese is 3-0 at home this season with league wins over Southeastern Louisiana and New Orleans.
Ledrick Eackles (15.4 ppg), Kevin Hardy (11.8) and Desharick Guidry (11.0) lead the team in scoring while Guidry tops the squad in rebounding with a 7.3 per game average. At Lamar, Guidry scored a season-high 21 points to go along with nine rebounds.
In counting just the conference games, McNeese ranks in the top three in the league in scoring defense (3rd at 68.5), free throw shooting (3rd at .764), field goal defense (1st at .381), three-point field goal defense (3rd at .290), blocked shots (3rd at 5.0), and steals (1st at 9.3).
Corpus Christi snapped an 8-game losing streak with three straight wins to start conference play, winning at Central Arkansas and Oral Roberts before defeating Northwestern State at home. The Islanders are coming off an 80-70 loss to first place Stephen F. Austin.
Two players are scoring in double-figures with the Islanders – John Jordan (16.0) and Rashawn Thomas (10.0).
The Islanders are averaging 80.8 points a game in league games only while allowing 74.2 points. AMCC leads the league in field goal shooting (.526) and in three-point percentage (.429) in conference play.