The 2016-17 season was filled with highlights and headlines for the Sam Houston State Bearkats. Awards were won, records were broken and five Southland Conference titles made their way back to Huntsville.

With the upcoming 2017-18 athletic season nearing its start, Bearkat Athletics will take a look back at the 2016-17 season throughout the summer months, highlighting the best of the past year.

Continue to keep tabs on and follow @BearkatSports on Twitter to catch the top stories of 2016-17 as they are unveiled.

Game Story: Kats Stay Hot, Defeat SFA 72-63 (2/2)

HUNTSVILLE – The Bearkat men's basketball team faced one of its biggest hurdles of its season in early February when it hosted longtime rival and four-time defending league champion Stephen F. Austin.

The Kats dropped their first two games out of the gate to open the Southland Conference slate, but had since reeled off a seven-game win streak to pull into a tie with New Orleans for the league's top slot. Meanwhile, the Lumberjacks were riding a high of their own after drawing to within a game of the league lead with a win of their own over the Privateers.

But there was more on the line for the Kats against their rivals, having dropped 13 consecutive games to the ‘Jacks dating back to the 2010-11 season, and six in a row at Bernard G. Johnson Coliseum since 2010.

Early on neither team was able to take full control with the lead changing hands nine times before the midway point. Sam Houston stayed in it with a strong half at the foul line, hitting 13 of its 15 tries. SFA hit its first three-point basket of the night to start the game, but missed each of its next six.

Still, the teams were tied at 30 apiece until baskets from Chris Galbreath Jr. and Jamal Williams closed the half with the Kats holding a 4-point edge.

From there the Kats would not give the lead back. Sam Houston would score the first eight points of the second half and built its lead to as much as 14 points behind 11 second-half points from John Dewey III.

Down the stretch the Bearkats turned to their defense, holding SFA without a field goal for nearly four minutes. The ‘Jacks were able to get some shots to fall late, drawing to within six points in the game's final minute. But Jovante' Spivey and Williams were true at the foul line, sinking a pair of free throws each as the clock ran out on a 72-63 Bearkat win.

Best of 2016-17 in Bearkat Athletics Schedule
No. 20 – Softball Sweeps HBU To Clinch SLC Tournament Berth

No. 19 – Football Clinches Southland Conference Title
No. 18 – Baseball Opens SLC Play With 13 Straight Wins
No. 17 – Men's Golf Takes Second At Warrior Princeville Makai Invitational
No. 16 – Briscoe Throws 7 TD As Kats Blast ‘Jacks In Battle Of The Piney Woods
No. 15 – Gettwart Leads Women's Tennis To Win At First-Place Lamar
No. 14 – Three Bearkats Reach 1,000-Point Mark For Careers
No. 13 – Women's golf wins school-record five tournaments
No. 12 – Offensive outburst leads Women's Basketball to win over Demons
No. 11 – Women's Tennis Clinches First Tourney Berth Since 2013
No. 10 – Bowling Earns Berth In NCAA Championships
No. 9 – Volleyball Makes Run To SLC Tournament Finals
No. 8 – Softball Walks Off With Win Over UCA In SLC Tournament
No. 7 – Men's Basketball Runs Streak To 8, Defeats SFA
No. 6 – July 21
No. 5 – July 24
No. 4 – July 26
No. 3 – July 28
No. 2 – July 31
No. 1 – Aug. 2