By Daniel Johnson, Sports Editor
The playoffs are out of the picture for the ACU men’s basketball team, but that doesn’t mean its last game of the season has no effect on the postseason.
If ACU beats Texas A&M Kingsville in its season closer Saturday, the Wildcats can dash the Javelinas’ hopes of making the Lone Star Conference postseason tournament.
“We wouldn’t mind spoiling that for them,” said guard Cortnie Ross.
The Javelinas are 4-6 and would need to beat ACU and have Tarleton beat 5-5 Eastern New Mexico to make the LSC tournament. An outcome Ross says isn’t going to happen.
“We’re going to win,” Ross said. “I give you a guarantee.”
Despite the chance to spoil Kingsville’s playoff hopes, guard Tiago Souza is only concerned about getting the Wildcats’ first win since Jan. 23.
“I don’t think about knocking them out too much,” Souza said. “I’m just thinking about winning the game.”
Souza, who is one of three seniors that will play their last game as a Wildcat Saturday, said winning would be a pleasant ending to his two-year career at ACU.
“A lot of stuff is going through my head right now,” Souza said. “We just need to make the last game special and try to get a victory in Kingsville.”
Guard Norman Alexander, another Wildcat senior, sees this last game as his chance to make an impact as an ACU player.
“This is the last time to leave my mark on the program,” Alexander said.
The first time ACU and Kingsville met, the Javelinas outscored the Wildcats 85-74. But playing at home doesn’t necessarily give Kingsville an advantage; Kingsville is 1-3 at home in conference play.
ACU is 1-10 in conference and 10-16 overall after losing to Angelo State 67-64 Monday. The loss was ACU’s eighth straight in conference play and first to Angelo this year.
Ross led the Wildcats in scoring and rebounding with 19 points and15 rebounds. Ross also grabbed three steals in the loss.
ACU led by as much as seven points in the second half against Angelo but was unable to maintain its lead when it counted most.
Although this season has found the Wildcats on the losing end most of the time, Alexander said winning the last one is important.
“We’re gonna try and win it; it’s the last one,” Alexander said.
ACU will take on Kingsville at 4 p.m. Saturday.