Bucs hope to stay in contention, face Campbell Monday night

Sunday, February 22, 2009

BUIES CREEK, N.C. (Feb. 23, 2009) -- Having snapped a three-game losing streak in its last game, the ETSU men's basketball team hopes to continue a winning trend as it plays the first of its final three games of the regular season Monday night at Campbell. Tip off inside the Camels' new Gore Arena is set for 7 p.m.

ETSU's regular season title hopes got a boost on Sunday, as Belmont fell to Mercer in league play. At 18-9 overall, 12-5 in Atlantic Sun play, a win against Campbell would pull the Bucs back into a tie with the Bruins for second place, and the Bucs would remain one game back of Jacksonville for first place.

For more on Monday's game, click on the game notes link above or read the game notes below:

The series against Campbell

The Bucs are a perfect 10-0 all-time against the Camels, having defeated Campbell seven straight since joining the Atlantic Sun Conference in 2005-2006 ... In their last meeting, the Bucs dropped CU inside Memorial Center, 79-60, back on Jan. 22.

Last time against Campbell

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Jan. 22, 2009) - Senior Kevin Tiggs (Flint, Mich.) scored a game high 27 points and junior guard Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.) posted a season high 22 as the ETSU men's basketball team held off a stingy Campbell squad 79-60 Thursday night in Atlantic Sun Conference action at Memorial Center ... The Bucs shot an impressive 53 percent from the floor and were hitting at a 73 percent clip from the foul line, while holding Campbell to just 39 percent from the floor. In addition, the Bucs outrebounded the Camels 36-32 and forced 22 turnovers ... In the first half, the Bucs picked up where they left off earlier in the week during a 30-point win over Belmont - employing a stifling defense and effective transition offense. The result was a 23-6 run midway through the first 20 minutes that left ETSU holding a 37-15 lead at the 5:15 mark. It could have been worse for Campbell, but the Camels put together a rally of their own and outscored the Bucs 17-3 over the final five minutes to make it 40-32 at the break ... The second half began with Campbell continuing its run and making it 40-37 with five straight points. However, from there the Bucs finally found their rhythm again on offense with a 16-4 burst to make it 57-41 with 13:40 left in the game. The Camels would cut the lead to eight points once again at 64-56 with 7:12 left, but Tiggs would score 10 points to power a 15-4 run by ETSU over the next three minutes to make it 79-60 and basically close out the game for the Bucs with 3:11 left ... For Campbell, William Kossangue led the way offensively with 18 points, while Junard Hartley pitched 11 ... The Bucs get a three-day break before hosting USC Upstate in the final game of ETSU's four-game homestand on Monday night at 7 p.m. That game will air regionally on CSS throughout the Southeast. For more on ETSU men's basketball throughout the season, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men's basketball link.

Last time out

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (Feb. 17, 2009) - Junior guard Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.) eclipsed the 1,000-point mark with a free throw late in the game and senior forward Kevin Tiggs (Flint, Mich.) matched his career high with 32 points as the ETSU men's basketball team snapped a three-game losing streak and remained in the thick of the Atlantic Sun Conference title hunt with a 66-61 win over USC Upstate Thursday night inside G.B. Hodge Center ... Smith, whose 1,000th point came on a critical free throw with 2:06 left in the game, finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the season and the seventh of his career, as the Buccaneers improved to 18-9 overall, 12-5 in A-Sun play. Meanwhile, the Spartans dropped to 7-19, 6-11 ... An unusual first half was highlighted by Tiggs' fantastic play, as the senior scored 23 of ETSU's 29 points and helped power a 17-2 run to close out the first 20 minutes, giving the Bucs a 29-20 advantage at the break ... In the first half, the Bucs shot just 41 percent from the floor and trailed by as many as nine points at 14-5 with 11:25 before the break. However, from there the Spartans did not hit another field goal until the final second of the half and were outscored 24-6 over the final 11 minutes of the half. The Spartans finished the first half shooting just 27 percent from the floor and were 0-of-10 from the 3-point line ... Upstate certainly didn't stay cold in the second half, going on an 11-4 run to make it 33-31 with 16:45 left in the game. The Spartans later tied the game at 48-48 and then took the advantage at 54-53. However, with the score 57-56 in favor of ETSU at the 3:50 mark, the Bucs got a pair of free throws and a layup from Smith. Later on, Tiggs stole a pass and went coast to coast for the layup to power a 6-0 run and make it 63-56 with 52 seconds left in regulation ... For the game, ETSU committed just 11 turnovers and shot a solid 44 percent from the floor and 70 percent from the foul line. Meanwhile, Upstate scored just 61 points on 40 percent shooting for the game and the Spartans were out-rebounded by the Bucs 38-31 ... The Bucs now have three 1,000 point scorers on the floor, with Tiggs, Smith and senior guard Courtney Pigram (Memphis) on the same team.

February troubles continue four-year trend for Bucs

Over the last four season since joining the Atlantic Sun Conference, the ETSU men's basketball team has either been tied or held sole possession of first place at some point in the month of February ... However, that's when the story turns bleak ... With the exception of the 2007-08 season, when the Bucs went 6-1 in February and ultimately won the league regular season title, the Bucs are are combined 12-10 in league play during the month of February and have relinquished first-place in three of those four seasons ... In fact, a year ago the Bucs dropped from first place on Feb. 8 to a fourth seed by the end of the season. Below is a complete breakdown:

Season February Record

2005-06 3-4

2006-07 6-1

2007-08 6-3

2008-09 3-3 (currently)

Both Smith, Tiggs eclipse 1,000 points; Bucs have

three 1,000-point scoreres on the same team?

With a put back at the 2:08 mark of the first half at Lipscomb on Feb. 16, ETSU senior forward Kevin Tiggs (Flint, Mich.) eclipsed the 1,000-point mark for his career ... Meanwhile, Tiggs' teammate -- junior Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.) -- reached that same pinnacle with a free throw at the 2:06 mark of the second half against USC Upstate on Feb. 19 ... Tiggs now stands at 1,050 points for his career, and Smith is at 1,003 ... While it is not rare to have multiple players on the same team that "eventually" become 1,000-point scorers, having multiple players on the same team that have already eclipsed 1,000-points is rare ... And now, the Bucs have Smith, Tiggs and senior guard Courntey Pigram (Memphis) that have reached that milestone ... The only two times in ETSU history that the Bucs have had three or more 1,000 point scorers on the floor at the same time was in 1990-91 and 2003-04 ... In 1990-91, four 1,000-point scorers were on the floor together at the same time, Keith "Mister" Jennings, Calvin Talford, Major Geer and Alvin West were on the floor together ... The other season this occurred was in 2003-04, when Jerald Fields, Zakee Wadood and Tim Smith all reached 1,000 points.

ETSU the "only" A-Sun team picked among nation's best "Prestige" programs

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (July 22, 2008) - Since the beginning of the modern era for NCAA Division I-A basketball - marked by the expansion of the NCAA Tournament field to 64 teams in 1984-85 - the ETSU men's basketball program ranks in the Top 30 percent of the 300 programs that were eligible for the postseason at that time, this according to a new "Prestige" ranking released by ESPN.com ... The Buccaneers, who have enjoyed six NCAA Tournament trips, one NIT berth, seven 20-win seasons, and a slew of conference regular season and tournament championships since 1984-85, ranked tied for 82nd out of 300 teams, meaning they were in the Top 27 percent of schools making the list. ETSU was ranked ahead of every current Atlantic Sun Conference team, as well as former Southern Conference rivals Appalachian State, Western Carolina, Georgia Southern and UNC Greensboro. The Bucs also were placed ahead of every current member of the Colonial Athletic Association with the exception of Old Dominion ... In addition, the Bucs ranked ahead of SEC schools such as Tennessee, Vanderbilt, South Carolina, Mississippi State, Georgia, Mississippi and Auburn, as well as other major programs such as Virginia Tech, Notre Dame, DePaul, Bradley, Clemson, California and Florida State.

"Big Three" making their mark in A-Sun this year

Watching the ETSU men's basketball team this season has shown that there is power in the number three ... With seniors Kevin Tiggs (Flint, Mich.) and Courtney Pigram (Memphis), along with junior Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.), the Bucs put three of the best players in league play on the floor at the same time. Currently, Tiggs and Pigram and No. 1 and No. 3 in the league in scoring, while Smith ranks No. 9 on that list ... Meanwhile, at least one of the three rank in the Top 10 of at least seven other major statistical categories, such as field goal percentage, rebounding, 3-point field goal percentage, steals, assists, assist/turnover ratio, defensive rebounds and minutes played.

Pigram moves to No. 4 on the all-time scoring list

With his 27-point effort against Florida Gulf Coast (Feb. 7), ETSU senior guard Courtney Pigram (Memphis) moved to No. 4 on the all-time scoring list ... Pigram now stands at 1,914 points passed former ETSU great Calvin Talford (1988-1992), who collected 1,872 points in his career ... Here are the Top 5 scorers in ETSU history:

1. Tim Smith (2002-2006) 2,300 points

2. Greg Dennis (1987-1992) 2,204 points

3. Keith "Mister" Jennings (1987-1991) 1,988 points

4. Courtney Pigram (2005-2009) 1,916 points *

5. Calvin Talford (1988-92) 1,872 points

* at present time

Pigram, Tiggs impressive on offensive end in 2008-09

Seniors Courtney Pigram (Memphis) and Kevin Tiggs (Flint, Mich.) have enjoyed impressive offensive performances this season, and the two rank among the nation's best when it comes to offensive production ... As of Feb. 16, Tiggs leads the Atlantic Sun Conference and ranks 17th nationally with a 21.2 points per game average (as of Feb. 15), while Pigram ranks third in the A-Sun with 18.0 points a game (as of Feb. 2) ... Pigram is one of just four active players nationally with more than 1,500 points, 350 assists and 200 steals in their careers.

Player, School......................................................Asts Stls Pts

Courtney Pigram, ETSU 388 221 1914

Bartow reaches 100th victory at ETSU;

recently eclipsed 200 career wins with Wingate victory

ETSU head coach Murry Bartow reached 100 wins at ETSU with the Buccaneers 81-61 win over Mercer (12/5), a milestone which comes after just having reached 200 career coaching wins as the Buccaneers defeated Wingate (11/20) ... Bartow is now 216-153 for his career, a 59 percent winning percentage ... Bartow, the son of legendary coach Gene Bartow, is also 114-70 (.620) at ETSU, which gives him the best winning percentage in school history ... In his previous five seasons at ETSU, Bartow has averaged 19 wins a year.

Home Sweet Dome

Since the 1996-97 season, the Buccaneers are an amazing 128-39 inside Memorial Center, good for a winning percentage of 77 percent ... The Bucs had won five straight at Memorial Center during the 2006-07 season before a loss to Belmont (1/2) ... The Bucs then rattled off 10 straight at home to stand at 15-1 on the Memorial Center floor that season, but fell to Belmont in the championship of the A-Sun Tourney... In 2007-08, the Bucs were 11-2 at Memorial Center ... This season the Bucs are 9-1 at home.

 

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