LSC races tight heading into final week

CNJ staff

The Lone Star Conference basketball regular season is down to its final week. All but one of the 21 teams — 10 men’s, 11 women’s — remain in the running for the conference tournament, which is slated for Feb. 29-March 4 at Allen, Texas.

The top eight teams on each side qualify. For the men, seven teams have clinched berths, with Angelo State, Abilene Christian and Texas A&M-Commerce fighting for the final spot.

Despite a four-game losing streak, the Eastern New Mexico University men are assured of no worse than the No. 7 seed, and could surpass sixth-place Texas A&M-Kingsville by winning one of their final two games.

On the women’s side, six teams have clinched berths, with Incarnate Word and ENMU in line for the final two spots. Both Texas A&M-Kingsville and 10th-place Abilene Christian, though, have a chance to slip in at No. 8 with the right combinations.

The only team on either side which has been eliminated is women’s last-place Texas A&M-Commerce (1-23, 0-18 LSC).

Here’s a breakdown (LSC record, remaining games in parentheses):

MEN

1) Midwestern State (14-2, @ WT, ENMU) — No. 1 seed with split this week; wins tiebreaker vs. TSU by virtue of sweep of Cameron (TSU split).

2) Tarleton State (13-3, @ ASU, ACU) — No worse than No. 2 seed.

3) West Texas A&M (11-5, MSU, @ CU) — Locked into No. 3 seed because of TSU’s sweep of MSU.

4) Incarnate Word (11-7, finished) — Clinched No. 4 seed by virtue of split with TSU.

5) Cameron (9-7, @ ENMU, WT) — Locked into No. 5 seed, lose tiebreaker to UIW (0-2 vs. TSU).

6) Texas A&M-Kingsville (7-11, finished) — Lose tiebreaker to ENMU. No worse than No. 7 seed.

7) Eastern New Mexico (6-10, CU, @ MSU) — Need split to win tiebreaker vs. A&M-K and No. 6 seed by virtue of win vs. MSU. No worse than No. 7 seed over ACU or ASU by virtue of splits vs. both and win vs. MSU.

8) Angelo State (4-12, TSU, @A&M-C), Abilene Christian (4-12, A&M-C, @ TSU) or Texas A&M-Commerce (3-13, @ACU, ASU) — ASU has inside track by virtue of win vs. UIW. Others need to get to five wins and have ASU lose twice this week.

WOMEN

1) Tarleton State (16-2, @ASU, ACU) — Clinched division by virtue of 3-1 record vs. MSU and WT, including sweep of MSU.

2/3) Midwestern State (14-4, @ WT, ENMU) and WT (14-4, MSU, @ CU) — Game on Wednesday should determine No. 2 seed. WT has tiebreaker, though, with split vs. TSU.

4) Cameron (11-7, @ ENMU, WT) — Need one win to clinch No. 4 seed.

5) Angelo State (9-9, A&M-C, @ TSU) — Need sweep and CU to lose twice to earn tiebreaker for No. 4 seed.

6) Texas Woman’s (8-10, @ A&M-K, UIW) — Have tiebreakers over UIW, ENMU and A&M-K by virtue of splits vs. TSU and MSU. Also would win tiebreaker for fifth with ASU.

7) Incarnate Word (8-11, @ TWU) — Lose tiebrekers with ASU, TWU, ENMU or A&M-K, all of whom have beaten at least one of top three, and thus could be out with loss to TWU.

8) Eastern New Mexico (7-11, CU, @ MSU) — Earn No. 7 seed on a tiebreaker, by virtue of a split with WT, with either two wins or a split and UIW loss. No. 8 seed with split and A&M-K loss. ENMU also has tiebreaker vs. A&M-K, but would be out with two losses if A&M-K beats TWU or, on a head-to-head tiebreaker, ACU wins twice.

9) Texas A&M-Kingsville (7-12, TWU) — Need win and two ENMU losses to earn No. 8 seed. Holds tiebreaker over ACU by virtue of split with CU.

10) Abilene Christian (6-12, A&M-C, @ TSU) — Needs two wins, plus split or two losses by ENMU and loss by A&M-K, to earn No. 8 seed.