7th-seeded Bulldogs, Lamar battle in Region XIV Tourney

JACKSONVILLE — Coach Michael Landers’ Navarro Bulldogs drew the No. 7 seed and will play 10th-seeded Lamar State-Port Arthur in first-round play Tuesday at the Region XIV Men’s Basketball Tournament.

The Bulldogs face coach Lance Madison’s Seahawks (7-12/14-16) in the 6 pm game at John Alexander Gym.  The Jacksonville ISD Gymnasium formerly was known as the R.E. ‘Bob’ and Vivian Smith Gym at Lon Morris College.

kc8The Bulldogs (18-11/9-10) slipped into the No. 7 seed Saturday by completing a season sweep from the Bossier Parish Cavaliers.  Navarro scored an 84-80 win at the BPCC Health and Physical Education Building, while Kilgore lost the seeding tiebreaker advantage it had claimed here Wednesday as it dropped a 76-69 decision to Trinity Valley at Master’s Gymnasium.

Navarro and Lamar State-Port Arthur will be meeting for the second time this season, exactly three months to the day they met in zone crossover play at The Wolens Special Events Center in Corsicana.  Both teams are worlds-apart different now than they were on December 6, and that will make for an intriguing matchup when they collide Tuesday on a neutral court.

After starting 8-14 and 2-10 in conference, the Seahawks now are arguably the league’s hottest squad — and certainly in the South Zone.   They are playing their best ball at the right time of the year.  They’ve been doing it since their homecoming game February 17 against Lee that was billed as two teams battling for their tournament lives.

Ever since that 77-72 win, they’ve been winning.  Winners of six of their last eight games, Lamar State brings a three-game winning streak that includes wins over third-seeded San Jacinto, fourth-seeded Blinn and a high-scoring Coastal Bend squad that was 10-3 on its homecourt this season.

During semester-exam week and nearing the holiday break, Navarro defeated the Seahawks, 69-65.

Here’s the weekend information package, including scores from all the final regular-season games, plus tournament seeding and pairings.

LINKS:   Region XIV Tournament Webpage               Region XIV Tournament Livestream


From Games Saturday, March 3, 2018
TVCC  76  (18-1/27-3),  Kilgore  69  (8-11/16-12)
Navarro  84  (9-10/18-11),  Bossier Parish  80  (9-10/17-13)
Paris  85  (12-7/23-7),  Panola  82  (11-8/19-11)
San Jacinto  76  (10-9/18-12),  Jacksonville  75  (11-8/21-9)
Angelina  81  (6-13/14-16),  Coastal Bend  67  (7-2/12-14)
Blinn  78  (9-10/19-11),  Lee  71  (3-16/9-21)
SATURDAY:  Navarro 84, Bossier Parish 80
Trey Pulliam’s second double-double of the season — featuring a personal and team-high 22 points — guided the Bulldogs to a crucial road win and a season sweep of the Bossier Parish Cavaliers.
Pulliam also dished out 10 assists in the win as the Bulldogs clinched the No. 7 seed for the Region XIV Men’s Basketball Tournament beginning Tuesday in Jacksonville.  Pulliam last fashioned a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds in a win January 8 over the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Emmanuel Egbuta scored 19 points on 7-of-8 shooting and cleared a team-high eight rebounds.  Egbuta, who went 5-of-11 from the foul line, connected on two free throws that put Navarro ahead for good (76-75) with 1:36 to play. A BPCC turnover during its next possession resulted in a Pulliam layup for insurance on the other end.
BPCC’s Mubarak Muhammed poured in a game-high 31, including a 30-foot, three-pointer that made it a three-point game with :03 left. The Cavaliers were forced to foul, and the Bulldogs, who came in shooting just over 60 percent from the free throw line, would get four straight free throws from guard Jahlil Nails to put the game out of reach.

Jason Holliday added 16 points for the Cavs, and Brandon Moore had 12. Trey Pulliam and Egbuta led Navarro with 22 and 19 points, respectively.

NAVARRO:  Pulliam 22, Egbuta 19, Nails 17, Keeling 15, Griffin 8, Epps 3.  TOTALS: (31-55)-(8-22)-(14-23)-84.


1. TVCC (27-3)
2. Tyler (23-6)
3. San Jacinto (18-12)
4. Blinn (19-11)
5. Paris (23-7)
6. Panola (19-11)
7. Navarro (18-11)
8. Bossier Parish (17-13)
9. Kilgore (16-12)
10. Lamar State-Port Arthur (14-16)
11. Coastal Bend (12-14)
12. Angelina (14-16)

Tuesday, March 6
Session I
1 pm — (8) Bossier Parish (17-13) v (9) Kilgore (16-12)
3 pm — (5) Paris (23-7) v (12) Angelina (14-16)
Session II
6 pm — (7) Navarro (18-11) v (10) Lamar State-Port Arthur (14-16)
8 pm — (6) Panola (19-11) v (11) Coastal Bend (12-14)

Wednesday, March 7

Thursday, March 8
1 pm — (1) TVCC (27-3) v BPCC-Kilgore winner
3 pm — (4) Blinn (19-11) v Paris-Angelina winner
6 pm — (2) Tyler (23-6) v Navarro-Lamar State winner
8 pm — (3) San Jacinto (18-12) v Panola-Coastal Bend winner

Friday, March 9
6 pm and 8 pm

Saturday, March 10
7 pm