A historic season for Stephen F. Austin came to an end as the 12th seed Lumberjacks fell to the 4th seed UCLA Bruins 77-60 in the Round of 32 at the NCAA Tournament .
UCLA took control of the game early when the Lumberjacks suffered a field goal drought that lasted almost six and a half minutes. During that stretch, SFA came up empty on nine consecutive offensive possessions. The Jacks finally snapped the run on an offensive rebound and putback by Thomas Walkup. Moments later Deshaunt Walker buried consecutive three point attempts to pull SFA within five at 32-27. UCLA responded, though, and outscored SFA 10-5 over the final 3:47 to lead 42-32 at the half.
Early in the second half SFA had another spirited spurt to attempt to climb back into the game. Walkup scored, Nikola Gajic drained a three, then Jacob Parker stole a ball then finished an alley-oop with a dunk. The 7-0 run pulled SFA within six at 45-39, but UCLA again immediately answered. The Bruins outscored SFA 13-2 as the Lumberjacks again suffered a field goal drought of almost five full minutes.
Turnovers are always a telling stat in SFA games, but usually it's a stat in their favor. The Lumberjacks only committed eight turnovers, but usually they force teams into more than 16 a game. UCLA committed just four turnovers in the entire game while assisting on 21 of their 29 made field goals.
Thomas Walkup led SFA with 22 points and 11 rebounds. Desmond Haymon, the hero in the Round of 64 win over VCU, scored 17. Southland Conference Player of the Year Jacob Parker scored 22 vs VCU, but only managed five points tonight on 1-of-7 shooting. He did grab eight rebounds and dish five assists.
Jordan Adams led UCLA with 19 points, six rebounds, and five assists. Kyle Anderson had 15 points and eight rebounds. Norman Powell scored 16.
The loss snaps Stephen F. Austin's 29 game win streak. SFA finishes the 2013-14 season with a remarkable record of 32-3. When the Lumberjacks tipoff the 2014-15 season, they will carry over a 33 game home winning streak and a 12 game road winning streak. Both streaks are tied for the longest such streaks (with Duke and Wichita St. respectively) in the country.