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Lamar opens SLC Tournament against McNeese State

Winner will play Nicholls on Thursday at 7:30pm

BEAUMONT, Texas — Lamar University (16-15) enters the Southland Conference Championship tournament as the league’s No. 6 overall seed after posting a 16-15 (.516) overall record and a 10-10 (.500) mark in league play.

The Cardinals won of four of their final six games to finish in a three-way tie for sixth place in the final standings. It is the fourth consecutive season that LU has qualified for the Southland Conference Championship tournament – a huge task for a 2019-20 squad that returned only four players from last seasons 20-win team. 

Unfortunately, the season didn’t end on a positive note as they rallied from an 18-point first-half deficit against rival McNeese only to fall on a three-pointer just before the final buzzer sounded. 

RELATED: Lamar edges Mcneese State to win Battle of the Border

The Cardinals will open the tournament against the team that they just played this past Saturday – seventh-seeded McNeese. 

The Cowboys (15-16) are making their first tournament appearance since the 2015-16 season. McNeese had a roller coaster season in 2019-20. After winning seven straight to move into third place in the conference standings, McNeese dropped six straight to find themselves on the verge of not advancing. The Cowboys righted the ship in time winning three of their final four to advance to Katy. Wednesday’s game will tip off at 7:30 p.m. from the Merrell Center in Katy. 

It will be broadcast live on Newstalk 560, and streamed live on ESPN+. 

If the Cardinals get past McNeese, they will face third-seeded Nicholls. The Colonels (21-10) won three consecutive, and seven of eight to finish in a two-way tie for second place in the league standings. Their lone loss during that stretch was a 19-point setback at Central Arkansas. The Colonels are coming off an 80-56 decision over McNeese, but when they step on the court in Katy it will be their first game in over a week. 

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If the Cards advance to the second round it will be broadcast live on Newstalk 560 KLVI and streamed live on ESPN+. 

Ides of March: The Cardinals are making their 19th appearance in the SLC Championships. Big Red enters the 2020 version of the Southland tournament looking to win its fifth title and make its seventh appearance in the NCAA Championships.

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