Just five games remain in the men’s basketball season. Sitting at third place in the Southland Conference, the Wildcats are poised to make a run in the conference tournament.
ACU (16-10, 11-4 SLC) currently sits just half-a-game behind Nicholls (18-9, 12-4 SLC) for second place and three games behind Stephen F. Austin (23-3, 14-1 SLC).
Head Coach Joe Golding said the team is in a very similar situation to where they were last year.
“I think it’s really similar,” Golding said. “There’s a lot of teams bunched together at the top. But I think at this time of the year, you can look at that stuff, but you can’t get caught up in it.”
Last season, the Wildcats won six of their last seven, clinching the second spot in the Southland Conference Tournament.
After an 82-68 win on the road against Houston Baptist, the Wildcats are riding a four-game win streak. Leading the way on this winning streak has been senior guard Payton Ricks.
On Feb. 8, the Wildcats took down Lamar handily. In that game, Ricks exploded for a career-high seven 3-pointers. He said he’s enjoyed the competition down the stretch as the Wildcats battle near the top of the standings.
“We can either give them the tip or go up from here,” Ricks said. “I think we take every game the same way, same approach.”
The Wildcats also have a challenging remaining schedule. Out of the five opponents, two of them defeated ACU earlier in the season and another almost took down ACU, but the Wildcats won in overtime.
“We’ve got three games at home against really good opponents, coming up,” Golding said. “We just have to take it one game at a time, and trust the process.”
In the month of February, the Wildcats were met with challenges but sit at 5-1. Golding believes their success can help them later in March.
“We want to continue to play good basketball. February can be an ugly month, but we’re almost through February and March can be beautiful if you take care of February. I think this team has done a great job of that.”