Pilots earn No.2 seed in latest NAIA rankings
December 14, 2005
Shreveport, LA---After a perfect 12-0 start to the 2005 season, the LSUS Pilots jumped to No.2 in the latest NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball rankings that were released Wednesday afternoon. The Pilots jump to their highest seeding in LSUS history was due in large part to an Oklahoma Christian College (9-1) loss to NCAA Division II University of Central Oklahoma. OCC dropped from No.2 to No.5 after suffering their first loss of the season, allowing the Pilots who did not have a scheduled competition to take over the No.2 spot.
The Pilots earn their highest ranking in LSUS history just one day after suffering their first loss of the season against the current No.33 Texas Wesleyan Rams.
“I think we are very deserving to be in the No.2 spot at this time in the season. While last night’s loss is still heavy on our mind and our hearts, a 12-1 start heading into the Christmas break and a No.2 ranking in the NAIA is something our guys have worked very hard to achieve, and something they should be very proud of,” comments Pilot Head Coach Chad McDowell.
With nine of their last ten games being played away from The Dock, the road weary Pilots look forward to regrouping and beginning to prepare for their upcoming 2006 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference season which begins January 7th against Loyola University. The Pilots will have one contest prior to their conference opener against a very tough Central Baptist College took the Pilots to overtime before dropping an 83-80 decision.
“If before this season started someone would have said we would be 12-1 and ranked No.2 in the country heading into the break, I would have been very excited. We are 4-1 versus ranked NAIA opponents and have won 8-of-9 games on the road which has been no easy task. Our non-conference schedule has been very tough and we have gone through just about every situation you can be in throughout a basketball game; come from behind wins; a winning shot at the buzzer; a couple of lop-sided victories; and a tough road loss against an NAIA national tournament contender,” explained McDowell.
“Now we will take what we have learned from our first 13-games and use that to help us in what we expect to be a very successful conference season, and hopefully a second trip to Kansas City and the 2006 NAIA national tournament.”