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SB Mavericks sweep weekend series with 152-66 win over Baytown Bandits

By Kirk Copeland
(318) 525-8853 cell
kirk@abamavericks.com

Sunday, January 25th

(Shreveport, LA.) – The top-ranked and defending ABA champion Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks finished off a sweep of the Baytown Bandits Sunday afternoon at Hirsch Memorial Coliseum, 152-66, setting up next Saturday’s championship finals rematch at #2 Jacksonville.

The win gives the Mavericks (18-0) a professional basketball record 78 straight wins as well as an 82-game home winning streak dating to 2011. Since moving to Shreveport in 2013, the Mavs are now 52-0 overall and 43-0 at Hirsch Memorial Coliseum.

Shreveport-Bossier shot 62.6% from the field while holding Baytown (6-10) to just 31%. The Mavs forced 28 turnovers, committed only 15, and outrebounded the overmatched Bandits 64-40.

“I thought we played great defense, particularly in the second half,” said Shreveport-Bossier head coach Steve Tucker after his ABA-record 194th career league victory. “We got eight great quarters of basketball this weekend, which sets us up nicely for next Saturday against Jacksonville. We got great play from our point guards – Anthony Jackson, Mike Crain and Ty Hamilton – in both games. I was very happy with our rotation, the way our chemistry is coming together at this point in the season. I’m not satisfied by any means, but I’m happy. We’re where we want to be at this point.”

Seven Mavericks scored in double figures, including three players with double-doubles. Former ABA league and Championship Finals MVP Josh Pace led the way once again, dropping in 22 points and six rebounds despite resting for the fourth period. Jackson, in his second game starting at point guard, fired in 20 points on 8-of-10 shooting and co-led the Mavs with six assists.

The Mavericks’ big men – Brandon Davis, Jon Rogers, Chad Eichelberger, and Kenneth Cooper – were especially dominant on both ends of the court, with Davis (19-14), Eichelberger (11-12), and Cooper (19-10) recording double figures in points and rebounds. Davis added five steals to lead the Mavs.

“I’m feeling more relaxed out on the court with every game,” said Cooper, who added a highlight reel assist to Tony Hooper to his stat line. “All of our big men are so good that you have to go in and contribute when you get your chance. It’s good to contribute to a team effort like we put forth every game.”

Also scoring in doubles for Shreveport-Bossier were P.J. Couisnard with 16 points – including 12 in the first 3:00 of the third quarter – and four steals; and Crain with 12 points, six assists, and six rebounds.

“We’ve got a big challenge ahead of us, playing Jacksonville on the road next Saturday,” said Tucker. “I’m happy with how we prepared and went out and took care of our business this weekend against Baytown, but all sights are focused on going to Jacksonville and playing a great Giants team that has won 12 straight since they lost to us (113-96 on December 13 at Hirsch Memorial Coliseum. We understand the challenge in front of us, and we’re going to go down there and play our game.”

The Mavericks and the Giants (17-1) tip-off next Saturday, January 31, at 7 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.

Tickets for 2014-15 Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks games are on sale now at www.sbmavs.com or at Hirsch Memorial Coliseum box office, which can be reached at (318) 631-4930.

The Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks and KSLA News 12 have partnered to give you the latest Mavs news and fun giveaways right on your smartphone. All you have to do is text “Mavericks” to 81212 to get involved

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