Above photo by Luke C. Zayas/True To The Cru
BELTON, Texas- The UMHB men’s basketball team will face not one, but two D-I opponents in its first week of the season, as it was announced Monday that Stephen F. Austin is set to face the Crusaders on Nov. 11.
Tip-off is set for 6:30 p.m. at the William R. Johnson Coliseum in Nacogdoches, Texas, and the contest will be streamed live on ESPN+.
In addition to that contest, UMHB has contests against Southwestern (Nov. 9 in Belton), and D-I UT-Arlington (Nov. 13 in Arlington) scheduled for the week. Both games against D-I opponents will serve as exhibitions for the Cru.
The Lumberjacks of SFA were previously scheduled to play Southern on Thursday prior to the schedule change.
It is a late addition to the 2021-22 schedule for both teams, and is the first meeting between the two programs in UMHB’s D-III era.
SFA, like UMHB, opens its season on Tuesday night, as the Lumberjacks host LSU-Alexandria. The team is led by head coach Kyle Keller, in his sixth season at the helm of the program. SFA posted a 16-5 record a year ago, and a 12-3 record in Southland Conference play. Leading scorer Gavin Kensmil returns, as the senior forward averaged 15.9 points per game. The Lumberjacks also bring back guards Roti Ware (12.9 PPG, 2.7 APG) and David Kachelries (11.4 PPG, 2.5 RPG).
Conversely, UMHB has a core of its own, led by guard Josiah Johnson (29.3 PPG in 2020-21), a D3hoops.com Preseason All-America selection, and forward Ty Prince (17.6 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 5.2 APG). Added depth in the form of transfers has only increased UMHB’s talent level, as the Crusaders return a total of 11 players from last year’s team that went 13-0 in ASC play.
UMHB head coach Clif Carroll is entering his second season leading the Cru.