Men’s basketball makes up for heighth with speed

Danny Bailey - Staff Writer

Danny Bailey – Staff Writer

Danny Bailey

It never fails that on any given day, in any sport, the better team between two opponents can lose. Missouri Southern’s Men’s Basketball game Saturday against the Southwest Baptist Bearcats only speaks to what happens when two great teams meet on the hardwood.

Entering the contest, both squads were knotted up at 4-1 in the MIAA. Both have a share of the best conference record. Both show the exhausting defense that it takes to win championships in arguably one of the toughest conferences in the country. In a conference where points scored in the paint are hard to come by, SBU had only prayers to fall back on. Answered prayers. Seventeen made three pointers out of 34 attempts to be exact. For those of you who aren’t so good at math, that is 50%. An outrageous number for any team to shoot from downtown.

The Lions moved to 10-5 on the season (4-2 MIAA) and drop to 2nd place in the conference, with SBU gaining sole possession of 1st.

With a season of close calls on their record, the MSSU Men haven’t laid down. To the contrary, they have risen the quality of their game on several levels to compete for the prize at the end of the tunnel. Newcomers Skyler Bowlin,Vincent Ateba, Matt Monroe, Octavious Hawkins, and Tony Webb have made immediate impacts for the Lions already this season.

OK. Enough of being a sports writer. The sports writers out there write to make their team sound good. I’m too real to be that person. It’s time to be a fan of the game. The Lions are fast. Don’t believe me? Go to a game and watch them transition. They don’t have a lot of height. That isn’t much of a factor with a team full of men who can jump really, really high. My biggest problem so far is field goal percentage. The Lions take a high volume of shots, making a marginal amount, relying on their defense.

You will find me at every home game sitting in the front of the student section. I’ll be the guy who is constantly impressed with the 2007-08 Lions. Hope to see you there.