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LSUA Generals hoping high scoring offense leads them to 8th straight NAIA Tournament appearance

Published: Nov. 2, 2021 at 7:15 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The LSUA Generals have established themselves as one of the best basketball programs in the NAIA over the last decade.

The Generals have won five Red River Athletic Conference regular-season titles in their first seven seasons in school history and are aiming for the eighth straight NAIA Tournament appearance.

Head Coach Larry Cordaro has had immense success as the head of the program winning 85 percent of his games since 2014, but for him, he expects his players to win both on and off the court.

“We want to be winners in all that we do,” said Coach Cordaro. “We want to hustle on and off the floor, pick up our teammates and set a good example for the kids in the crowd by being role model citizens. This is a privilege for us to be a part of a college basketball team.”

Heading into the 2021 season, the Generals returned three of its top four leading scorers including Freshmen First Team All-Red River Athletic Conference performer Jakemin Abney. Because of COVID-19 rules, Abney gets another year of eligibility, so he might be listed as a freshman on the roster, but he already has the mindset of a veteran.

“It starts with trusting everybody,” said Abney. “We trust that everybody will make the right decision and right play at the right time.”

Coach Cordaro has seen the progression in his young playmaker and knows the team will look to him during big moments this season.

“The experience that he gained last year is going to help him for sure,” said Coach Cordaro. “He’s a guy that we are going to lean on for scoring.”

Abney is a part of a loaded backcourt, which now includes Nicholls State transfer A.J. Rainey.

“It’s like a bond,” said Rainey. “Everything we do, it’s like nobody is ever left out. Everybody is just right there at the right time.”

Together, Abney and Rainey will lead a high-powered Generals offense this year. In the first game of the season against Southeastern Baptist College, LSUA scored 97 points, which included a combined 37 by Abney and Rainey.

Abney said he’s looking forward to playing with Rainey this season because his game will elevate everyone else’s on the court.

“I wish I had his confidence,” said Abney. “His confidence is out the roof. He can score with the best of them, and he’s a good playmaker.”

LSUA will be back at The Fort November 4-5 against North American University before hitting the road for the rest of the month.

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