Seniors do not disappoint in last game at Flowers Hall

Senior forward Calvin Dade shoots a free throw against the University of Alabama-Huntsville Feb. 28. The Lions won 83-67. UNA honored seniors Dade, Nathan Spehr and Marcus Landry during the game.

by Student Writer Mike Ezekiel

The men’s basketball team made a big statement in its last game of the year in Flowers Hall by defeating rival University of Alabama-Huntsville 83-67 Feb. 28.

Not only was the game a preview of what would be to come in the first round of the Gulf South Conference tournament, it was also the last home game for three UNA seniors.

“I started here last year, so I feel like finishing here strong would be really significant,” said senior forward Calvin Dade. “I haven’t been here all four years, but I would like to leave my mark.”

Dade, along with senior teammates Marcus Landry and Nathan Spehr, were honored in front of a crowd of 2,224.

“All of my family came to see me play,” Landry said. “I wanted to show them that I can still play at 25 (years old). It means a lot, especially with my performance. It’s all overwhelming right now.”

Landry and Dade each had a double-double in their last game at Flowers Hall. Landry scored 17 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, while Dade scored 13 and grabbed 11 boards.

Spehr, a four-year point guard for the Lions, finished his last UNA home game with 23 points. Spehr knocked down four three-pointers and hit nine of 15 from the field.

“(Senior Day) couldn’t have gone any better,” Spehr said. “Having my dad and my friend here was a special moment. I’ve been here four years and they’ve watched me play before, but being the last game at Flowers Hall made it special.”

Head coach Bobby Champagne had a special moment of his own.

Not only did Champagne meet with his three senior players and their families to honor them at mid-court last week, but he also earned his 200th win as the Lions head coach in the process.

“I haven’t really thought about it,” Champagne said. “Our administration has been very supportive. We’ve had really good assistant coaches and really good players over the years.”

Champagne down-played the milestone and instead praised the performance of his three seniors and their performance in the last home game of their careers.

“The three guys played good,” he said.

The Lions season ended after falling to UAH 97-79 in the first round of the GSC tournament March 3.