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Southland Conference Champion Must Win Saturday
Four first-place teams meet in games Saturday
Two games Saturday will go a long way in determining the 2009 Southland Conference champion. No. 17/15 Stephen F. Austin will play at Southeastern Louisiana at 2 p.m. and No. 10/10 McNeese State will play at No. 25/25 Texas State will play at 6 p.m. in the Toyota Game of the Week on the Southland Conference Television Network. All four teams are in a first-place tie entering the final two weeks of play making Saturday a must-win to stay in the hunt.
The other two games pit Northwestern State at Nicholls at 1 p.m. in a battle of 0-5 teams in conference play, and Central Arkansas at Sam Houston State. The Bears and Bearkats are each 2-3 in league play.
Looking Back to Last Week
The Southland Conference picture didn’t come any more in focus last Saturday. Four league teams were tied atop the league standings and all four won. McNeese State, Southeastern Louisiana, Stephen F. Austin and Texas State each picked up victories to move to 4-1 in conference play with just two weeks to play.
Last Saturday, Texas State scored with 27 seconds to claim a 27-24 win at Central Arkansas and Stephen F. Austin delivered the knock-out punch in the final three minutes to thwart upset-minded Nicholls. McNeese State and Sam Houston State combined for 105 points in a 63-42 win by the Cowboys. Southeastern Louisiana pitched a 27-0 shutout of Northwestern State.
A Look at This Weekend’s Series…
Northwestern State at Nicholls: This will be the 37th meeting between the schools. The Demons lead the overall series 23-13 though the series is tied 9-9 at Nicholls. Northwestern won 36-28 last year in Natchitoches and won its last visit to Thibodaux in 2005.
Central Arkansas at Sam Houston State: This will be the fourth meeting between the Bears and Bearkats. Central Arkansas has not lost to Sam Houston, winning last year 48-46 in Conway. When UCA visited Huntsville in 2007, it won 35-14.
Stephen F. Austin at Southeastern Louisiana: This will be the 13th meeting between the schools. The Lumberjacks, which won 48-45 a season ago, have a 6-5-1 advantage in the series though the teams have split since Southeastern resumed playing football in 2005. SFA leads 5-3-1 in Hammond.
McNeese State at Texas State: This will be the 27th meeting between the two programs. McNeese State leads 18-8 in a series dating back to 1957. The Cowboys lead 12-3 in San Marcos. Texas State won 45-42 last year in Lake Charles.
By Southland Conference Media Relations