LSUS Men's Basketball Roster continues to grow
August 09, 2005
Shreveport, LA---Men’s basketball is returning for its junior year at LSUS with new expectations, new goals, and a roster full of new faces. The Pilots 2005 journey ended with a loss in the round of Sweet 16 at the NAIA National Tournament in Kansas City, MO, and a final regular season ranking of #7 in the nation. The season’s last game also brought to an end the college careers of five outstanding young men and extremely talented athletes in the likes of Derrick Hill, Justin Collins, Abraham Saxon, David Walker, and Derrick Rogers. “Those 5 guys will be remembered forever here at LSUS.” Commented head coach Chad McDowell just days after returning from the NAIA national tournament. “They will always be family and will be given credit for helping build our program in such a short amount of time. Replacing these guys will be tough. They are more than just great players; they are great young men and fierce competitors.”
With such a dramatic roster renewal, most NAIA fans and supporters may be thinking “well, they better have enjoyed the ride while it lasted.” This may be the case for many programs that may have to suffer through the heartache and hard times of a rebuilding year after such a successful run at the ultimate goal of a national championship; this however is not the case for the LSUS Pilots. The Pilot fans are excited to see the returners and the players the have coming in.
The LSUS men’s basketball recruiting class earlier this summer announced the signings of former Southwood High School star Josh Porter who transferred from Stephen F. Austin, former Byrd standout Kyle Blankenship who transferred from the University of Tulsa, and Louisiana Tech transfer Jeremy Johnston who finished his high school career at Airline High School.
In addition to what was already anticipated to be coach McDowell’s most promising recruiting year, the Pilots are excited to announce the signing of 6’8 small-forward, Anton Palmer, and 6’7 post player Shadrach Roome.
Palmer, a native of Chicago, IL, was projected as the 14th best small-forward and the 71st best high school senior in the country by espn.com after averaging 19 points and 10 rebounds at Julian High School in 2001.
Palmer attended Schoolcraft Junior College where he led the team to a #18 finish in the National Junior College Athletics Association Division I men’s basketball poll. He averaged 14 points and 8 rebounds and was named the Michigan Community College Athletics Association All-Star Game MVP. In 2004, Palmer was ranked the 9th best small-forward among junior colleges in the country by nbadraft.net. and 10th best by Lindy’s College Basketball magazine.
God given ability and athleticism will give Palmer the opportunity to be a dominant force in the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference. His versatility of being able to shoot from the outside, pass, and handle the ball along with his strength in the low post will add a scoring threat down low the Pilots have been looking for. “He is an incredible player and has put in many hours of hard work this summer anticipating the season” stated McDowell. “He will draw a lot of defensive attention from our opponents has the ability to put up big numbers every single night.”
To compliment Johnston and Palmer down low, the signing of Shadrach Roome, a 6’7 transfer from Northeastern State University, home of the 2003 NCAA Division II Men’s Basketball national champion, will add depth to the Pilots presence in the post. Roome averaged 5.8 points and 5.6 rebounds in his junior year averaging 21 minutes per game. Roome is the cousin of former Pilot player Abraham Saxon who are natives of the West Indies. Roome and Saxon attended and played high school basketball at Evangel Christian Academy in Shreveport, LA..
Roome will be looked upon to fill the void of LSUS’ all-time leading shot blocker Derek Hill. His physical attributes along with incredible athleticism completes a trio of post players who will be looked upon to not only rebound and block shots, but also contribute to an already potent LSUS offense. “Shadrach is a man and we are excited about what he brings to our team.” commented McDowell. “He is an incredibly strong player who can run the floor with anyone. He knows one speed and that is wide-open. We look for great things from Shad and feel like he will be able to give us another scoring presence inside that we need.”
The Pilots are excited about the season and the team they will put on the floor this upcoming season. McDowell stated, “This recruiting class along with the players we have returning is very strong and have the potential to be a very good team. The challenge is usually the same for most every team and we will be no different. We must play together as a team or we will underachieve. We are confident that these guys are up for the challenge and we are eager to get started.”
The final additions to the LSUS roster will be released soon.