Situated smack-dab between Wednesday’s sweep of Angelo State and a showdown with perennial contenders at West Texas A&M next week, is a trap game against teams headed nowhere fast.
But the Texans and TexAnns cannot afford to overlook the Javalinas in the stretch run to the conference tournament.
Tarleton’s men upset No. 4 Angelo State 72-68 Wednesday, moving them to within a game of the conference leaders.
They take on a Kingsville squad that has won only two of its nine LSC matchups, both against winless Eastern New Mexico.
The Javalinas, led by Troy Jones’ 14 points a game, score a league-worst 72 points per outing and shoot just 43 percent from the field, also at the bottom of the LSC stat sheets.
Tarleton’s offense, scoring at a 77 ppg clip, is paced by a trio of double-digit scorers in Mo Lee (14), Tashawn Mabry (13) and Michael Hardge (10.5).
The Texans’ LSC leading defense, giving up just under 62 points a game, is anchored by the Lone Star Conference Defensive Player of the Week Damion Clemons and Davene Carter. The duo combines for more than two blocks a game and contribute about six boards.
Tarleton brings a 21-2 overall mark into Saturday’s matchup, including an 8-2 league record, and an eight-game winning streak.
The Javalinas counter with a 7-14 slate in all games and a 2-7 LSC mark.
Tarleton’s TexAnns, also fresh off a win over Angelo State on Wednesday, take on a Kingsville team that has not tasted victory in the 2014-15 hoops season.
The Javalinas are 0-21 and winless in 11 tries against LSC competition.
Looking at their year on paper, it’s not hard to see why.
Kingsville scores just 52 points a game, more than 17 ppg behind the TexAnns, and its defense gives up 68.
Micah Weaver is good for 11 points a game for TAMU-K, the only team member scoring in double figures.
Tarleton counters with two, senior Kathy Thomas who pours in 14 a game, and Ikpeaku Iwobi, who contributes more than 11. Thomas, who led the TexAnns Wednesday with 12, has amassed 38 in her last two games.
The TexAnns travel to South Texas carrying a 13-8 season record and a 6-6 mark in conference play.
Action starts with the women’s game at 6 p.m. in the Steinke Center in Kingsville. The men tip-off at 8 p.m.