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McNeese basketball prepares for Nicholls, tough home stretch

Published: Jan. 24, 2022 at 11:13 PM CST
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - Three games into Southland Conference play, McNeese is 2-1 coming off a 10 point win over UIW and returns to the Legacy Center to host 2021 conference champs Nicholls and there is certainly no love lost between the Cowboys and the Colonels. McNeese Head Coach John Aiken was Nicholls’ top assistant prior to joining the Cowboys.

“Between myself and Coach Sadler coming from there, the history of me being there when Richie was there and ultimately turning down that job to come here and to be with Heath and not the animosity but there is a level of urgency that they come in here with,” Aiken said. “There will be some emotions on both sides but it’s about the kids playing basketball and we have to meet the level of urgency if not exceed it and you’ve got an unbelievable opportunity when you get to play the reigning conference champion who at the end of the day, they won the conference championship on our court last year. They celebrated at Burton. They took pictures at Burton. They held the trophy on our court.”

The Colonels will be a tough test led by Ty Gordon, the Southland’s leading scorer at more than 20 per game. Nicholls is the first test on a tough list of opponents they’ll host over their four-game home stretch.

“You look at it, Nicholls I want to say is 227 KenPom, New Orleans is 288 Southeastern is 270ish and those are three of the better if no the best besides Corpus are our next three games at home,” Aiken said. “Ultimately have to go back to them so this is a time to make some hay. We’ve got to protect the Legacy and if you can string some wins together here, you really create some momentum and take care of business you’re ultimately going to be playing for first place come Sunday with after this weekend four and a half weeks to play. These games are huge from a momentum standpoint and we have to take advantage of getting four in a row at home.

The Cowboys host Nicholls on Thursday following the completion women’s game.

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