#25 MSSU to Open Season Friday - FOX 14 TV Joplin and Pittsburg News Weather Sports |

#25 MSSU to Open Season Friday



Joplin, Mo. – The nationally-ranked Missouri Southern men's basketball program will open the 2018-19 season this weekend as the Lions travel to Mankato, Minnesota to participate in the MIAA/NSIC Challenge on Friday and Saturday.
The Lions open the season ranked 25th in the Basketball Coaches Poll and 24th in the Division II SID's poll. Southern will play against No. 18/16 St. Cloud State on Friday at 3 pm and will take on Minnesota State on Saturday at 3 pm.
Both games will have live stats and video available via the links in the story links above.
Southern is 3-3 in the tournament's short three-year history against the Huskies and Mavericks. The Lions are 2-1 against SCSU in the series history with a pair of wins in the first two games, but dropping last year's contest. Southern is 1-2 all-time against Minnesota State with a double-overtime win two years ago, however dropping an overtime contest last season. The Lions lost the first matchup with the Mavericks in 2015 in Joplin.
This year, a new MIAA opponent joins the fray as Lindenwood steps in for Pittsburg State.
The Lions were picked to win the MIAA in the preseason coaches poll, while SCSU and MSU were both picked in a tie atop the NSIC Poll.
The Lions return three starters from a season ago in All-MIAA performers Elyjah Clark and Kinzer Lambert, as well as Braelon Walker, who started late in the season. The Lions made the NCAA Tournament and Jeff Boschee was the MIAA Coach of the Year. Southern returns eight letter winners off of last year's team. Back to add depth to the roster is junior guard Parker Jennings, senior post Enis Memic, sophomore center Dexter Frisbie and sophomore forward Christian Bundy.
Clark has 199 career three pointers in his career and has set the MSSU single-season three-point record in each of his first two campaigns. He needs just 66 three pointers with two seasons remaining to tie the all-time record.
The Lions, as a team, broke the single-season three-point record last season with 283 and also broke the single-season record for three-point attempts with 715 and three's per game with 9.4.
The Lions will look at a possible starting lineup with two new starters in it. Probable starters for this weekend look to be Walker, Lambert and Clark, with newcomers Reggie Tharp and Cam Martin. Tharp is a junior college transfer from Paris Junior College, while Martin transfers from Division I Jacksonville State.
Other newcomers this season include Ted Brown (Concordia-St. Paul), Kyle Younge (St. Louis – Jennings HS) and Jadis White (St. Louis – Chaminade HS).

NABC/Division II Rankings  D2SIDA Media Poll 
(2018-19 Pre-Season) (2018-19 Pre-Season)
1 Bellarmine 29-3 1 Bellarmine 29-3
2 West Liberty 26-4 2 Lincoln Memorial 32-2
3 Lincoln Memorial 32-2 3 West Liberty 26-4
4 West Texas A&M 32-4 4 West Texas A&M 32-4
5 Northwest Missouri St. 27-4 5 Northwest Missouri St. 27-4
6 Saint Anselm 22-9 6 Indiana (Pa.) 22-8
7 Queens (N.C.) 32-4 7 Southern Nazarene 27-3
8 Indiana (Pa.) 22-8 8 Queens (N.C.) 32-4
9 Cal Poly Pomona 23-7 9 Saint Anselm 22-9
10 Southern Nazarene 27-3 10 Valdosta State 26-5
11 Valdosta State 26-5 11 Cal Poly Pomona 23-7
12 West Florida 28-4 12 Ferris State 38-1
13 Ferris State 38-1 13 West Florida 28-4
14 Western Washington 21-8 14 Western Washington 21-8
15 East Stroudsburg 27-6 15 Virginia State 25-5
16 Virginia State 25-5 16 St. Cloud State 24-9
17 Morehouse 25-3 17 Northern State 36-4
18 St. Cloud State 24-9 18 Regis 27-6
19 Regis 27-6 19 UC San Diego 21-11
20 Southwest Minn. St. 25-9 20 East Stroudsburg 27-6
21 Dallas Baptist 26-6 21 Morehouse 25-3
22 Florida Southern 21-11 22 Southwest Minn. St. 25-9
23 Findlay 28-5 23 Florida Southern 21-11
24 UC San Diego 21-11 24 Missouri Southern 20-10
25 Missouri Southern 20-10 25 Findlay 28-5

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