Konkol Era Begins Friday Night versus Millsaps

Nov. 12, 2015

GameDay Central | Game Notes

RUSTON – A new era begins on Friday night in the Thomas Assembly Center as first-year head coach Eric Konkol will lead the Bulldogs into the 2015-16 regular season opener against Millsaps College at 6:30 p.m.

Konkol and the Bulldogs will look to continue the standard of excellence set over the past few years. One of those standards is the success at home which is at a winning streak of 30 games, the fourth longest active streak in the country.

“We are all very excited to begin the regular season here at the TAC on Friday,” Konkol said. “Our players and coaches have worked hard to prepare for this season and we look forward to competing, learning more about our team and pushing forward to improve every day. We have many new faces on our team and we are all excited to represent Louisiana Tech.”

Fans got a glimpse of some of the new LA Tech players at the exhibition last Thursday like junior college transfer Da’Shawn Robinson and the two freshmen, Jy’lan Washington and Derric Jean.

Then there are the usual faces like Qiydar Davis, Merrill Holden, Dayon Griffin and preseason All-Conference USA selections Alex Hamilton and Erik McCree who were two of the top three scorers last season for LA Tech.



Hamilton and McCree have been a big part of the program over the last few years, but they have never opened the season at home. In fact, Friday night will mark the first time the ‘Dogs open at home since 2011.

“We always feel very fortunate to play at home in front of our tremendous fans,” Konkol said. “Playing the first two games at home allows us to focus on our game preparation without traveling and missing any class time as this fall quarter ends.

The Bulldogs are 26-7 in home openers since moving to the TAC in 1982, recording eight straight victories. The opponent trying to end these streaks is Millsaps College which plays in Division III as a member of the Southern Athletic Association (SAA).

The Majors went 7-19 last season, dropping all 12 matches they played on the road. One of their key returners is guard Mark Robertson who started all 26 games last season while averaging 7.3 points per game.

“The two areas we can always control are our effort and enthusiasm,” Konkol said. “We want to play extremely hard. We also want to be connected and execute our game plan. Millsaps runs a lot of motion on offense and changes up their defense. We need to be alert and make good decisions on both ends of the court while playing fast and aggressive.”

The two squads were both members of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (SIAA), facing each other on the hardwood regularly from 1926-41.

The last time they squared off was Nov. 24, 2002 which resulted in a 77-49 victory for the Bulldogs.

Free Johnny's pizza will also be available to the first 200 students. There will also be a post-game autograph session with the Dunkin’ Dogs.

Fans can access live video and audio of the game via the Internet by subscribing to LA Tech All-Access at LATechSports.com. The contest can be heard live on the LA Tech Sports Network on KXKZ 107.5 FM (Ruston) and KRMD 1340 AM (Shreveport). The “Voice of the Bulldogs” Dave Nitz will call the play-by-play and Jack Thigpen will provide analysis.

Twitter users can also receive live in-game updates by following @LATechHoops.


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