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 is taking 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: Williams’ Steal Sends Kats To Semifinals (3/9)

HUNTSVILLE – The Sam Houston State men’s basketball team had not had its way with Houston Baptist in its two regular-season meetings, but it was a different story in the quarterfinals of the Southland Conference Tournament with an unsung hero sealing the game for the Kats in the final minute.

The Bearkats, who were the No. 5 seed in the tournament, had knocked of Central Arkansas on the tournament’s opening day to set up their meeting with the Huskies. The Kats opened up the game strong with Chris Galbreath Jr. scoring eight of his team-best 15 points in the first six minutes of the game as Sam Houston raced out an 12-3 lead.

Despite the early spurt, the Huskies were able to draw to within a bucket at the intermission and finally drew even at 30-30 early in the second half. But Dakarai Henderson answered with Sam Houston’s only 3-point bucket of the second half on the next possession, igniting a 12-0 run that pushed the Bearkat lead to 42-30 with 14:07 left in regulation.

Still, HBU was able to claw back and got to within 55-54 with 2:29 to play on a 3-point basket by Asa Cantwell. Then, after the teams traded possessions, John Dewey III hit one of two tries from the foul line to push the lead back to 56-54 as the teams went below a minute to play.

But on the following possession Jamal Williams turned in the play of the game. The junior guard, who played just 13 minutes and scored three points in the game, prevented any chance of HBU going for the game-tying bucket by picking the pocket of Cantwell near midcourt with just 56 seconds left on the clock.

He then canned one of two from the foul line and collected the rebound off of a missed jumper by Colter Lasher on the next HBU possession, From there Dewey would take it to the finish line, making all six of his tries from the foul line in the game’s final 26 seconds to keep HBU at bay for a 63-59 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 – Baseball Claims SLC Tournament Title
No. 5 – Defensive Stand Seals Football Playoff Win Over Chattanooga
No. 4 – Track & Field Dominates Southland Meets
No. 3 – Williams' Steal Seals Men's Basketball Quarterfinals Win 
No. 2 – July 31
No. 1 – Aug. 2