|March 09, 2019||1st||2nd||Final|
|Stats at a Glance||UTC||ETSU|
|FG Percentage||.431 (22-51)||.444 (28-63)|
|3P FG Percentage||.526 (10-19)||.286 (4-14)|
|FT Percentage||.588 (10-17)||.571 (8-14)|
- 17||Tray Boyd
- 12||Jeromy Rodriguez
- 4||Daivien Williamson
- 3||Jeromy Rodriguez
Kevin Easley - 1
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (March 8, 2019) — For the second straight year, the ETSU men’s basketball team will open the Southern Conference Tournament with Chattanooga as the in-state rivals meet in the quarterfinals on Saturday afternoon inside U.S. Cellular Center. Tip-off is set for 2:30 p.m.
The game will be broadcast locally on ABC Tri-Cities, as well as ESPN+. Voice of the Bucs Jay Sandos will have the radio call beginning with the Atmos Energy Pregame show starting at 2 p.m. on WXSM-AM 640.
The winner of Saturday’s quarterfinal game will take on the winner of Wofford/VMI-Western Carolina in Sunday’s semifinal at 4 p.m.
For more information on the SoCon Championship, visit SoConSports.com or click here.
ABOUT THE BUCS
LAST TIME OUT
ETSU wrapped up regular season play with an 81-74 win over Western Carolina last Saturday inside Freedom Hall … Tray Boyd III (Memphis, Tenn.), Bo Hodges (Nashville, Tenn.) and Isaiah Tisdale (Lexington, Ky.) combined for 57 points, while the Blue and Gold shot 61 percent (28-46) from the field and 53 percent from beyond the arc (9-17) en route to improving to 23-8 overall and 13-5 in conference play. With the win, ETSU has matched the most victories over a four-year stretch with 99, which was also done from 1988-89 to 1991-92 … Boyd, who knocked down six of the Bucs’ nine three-pointers, tied a career-high with 24 points (8-of-11 shooting), while Hodges added 20 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three blocks and Tisdale contributed with 13 points, three steals and two assists. Boyd registered his sixth 20-point game of the season and Hodges has now accomplished the feat twice on the last three games … For only the third time this season, ETSU lost the battle on the boards as the Catamounts were plus-seven (32-25), snapping an 18-game run where the Bucs won the rebound margin. The Blue and Gold only generated three offensive rebounds on the night; however, ETSU converted 18 Western Carolina turnovers into 23 points and won the points in the paint by 14, 38-24 … The Catamounts, who were called for 24 fouls and had three players foul out, went 13-of-15 at the line. ETSU’s bench managed to outscored Western Carolina’s, 35-17 … With 5,520 fans in attendance, the Bucs hit their mark to average over 5,000 fans in SoCon play for the second straight season.
FOURTH STRAIGHT 20-WIN SEASON
The Bucs registered their fourth straight 20-win season following their 91-83 win over The Citadel on Feb. 14, marking just the second time in program history ETSU has posted four straight seasons of at least 20 wins (1988-89 to 1991-92) … In addition, Coach Forbes became the first Buccaneer head coach in program history to lead teams to four straight 20-win seasons … During this run of 20-win seasons, the Bucs have had a different player lead the team in scoring – Ge’Lawn Guyn with 18.6 points in 2015-16, T.J. Cromer at 19.1 points in 2016-17, Desonta Bradford with 15.4 points last season and Tray Boyd III currently leads the Bucs this year with 11.8 points per game ... The Bucs are the first SoCon team to reach this milestone since Davidson (2004-05 to 2008-09).
CLOSING IN ON 100
Following their seven-point win over Western Carolina last Saturday, the Bucs registered their 99th win since head coach Steve Forbes took over the program in 2015-16 … The 99 wins match the most victories over a four-year stretch in program history … The Blue and Gold tallied 99 wins from 1988-89 to 1991-92 – the only other four-game stretch of 20 wins seasons in school history ... With a win over Chattanooga, the Bucs will become the 18th Division I program to reach the 100-win mark over this four-year run, along with just the sixth non-Power 7 school to do so (Gonzaga, St. Mary’s, Nevada, New Mexico State and Vermont).
MORE ON THE 100-WIN MILESTONE
A win over the Mocs on Saturday would also be head coach Steve Forbes’ 100th career win at ETSU ... Forbes would join an elite group as only 10 current active Division I head coaches have reached the 100-win mark in their first four seasons -- Shaka Smart (111), Brad Underwood (109), Eric Musselman (107), Josh Pastner (106), Jamie Dixon (105), Mark Few (105), Steve Prohm (104), Roy Williams (103), Mike White (101), Jim Boeheim (100) and Chris Beard (100) ... Nevada’s Eric Musselman and Texas Tech’s Chris Beard are currently in their fourth season on the Division I level ... Forbes would become the fifth ETSU head coach to reach 100 wins, joining Madison Brooks (370), Murry Bartow (224), Alan LeForce (108) and Ed DeChellis (105).
BUCS IN ASHEVILLE
Since the 2016 Southern Conference Tournament, the Bucs have had a lot of success playing inside the U.S. Cellular Center as ETSU has gone 7-2 and made three consecutive trips to the championship game ... During this nine-game stretch, the Bucs are averaging 72.4 points and holding the opposition to 66.6 points per contest ... ETSU is shooting 46 percent from the field and 75 percent at the free throw line over these nine games in Asheville, while opponents are shooting 39 percent from the field and 28 percent from beyond the arc.
THREE STRAIGHT SOCON TITLE GAME APPEARANCES
ETSU has been a familiar face in the Southern Conference title game as the Blue and Gold have made three straight appearances in the final, marking the longest stretch by a SoCon team since Chattanooga played in four straight title games from 1992-95 ... The SoCon is one of 10 conferences to have a team reach three straight title games over the last three seasons: America East (Vermont, 3), ASUN (FGCU, 3), Big 12 (West Virginia, 3), Big East (Villanova, 4), MAAC (Iona, 6), SEC (Kentucky, 5), Summit (South Dakota State, 4), West Coast (Gonzaga, 21) and WAC (New Mexico State, 7).
BUCS IN THE SOCON TOURNAMENT
The Bucs have won seven SoCon Tournament titles with the last coming in 2017 ... ETSU won four straight SoCon Tournament titles from 1989-1992 and back-to-back titles in 2003 and 2004 ... The Bucs have appeared in 11 SoCon title games and are 7-4 in those contests ... Overall, ETSU is 37-21 (.638) in 28 all-time trips to the SoCon Tournament.
FOUR BUCS LAND ALL-SOCON HONORS
The East Tennessee State University men’s basketball team had four players receive Southern Conference honors as the league office announced its postseason awards on Wednesday ... Junior forward Jeromy Rodriguez (Santiago, Dominican Republic), sophomore guards Patrick Good (Johnson City, Tenn.) and Bo Hodges (Nashville, Tenn.) and freshman guard Daivien Williamson (Winston-Salem, N.C.) all received postseason honors. Rodriguez was named second team by the league coaches and first team by the media, Good landed third team honors from the coaches, Hodges was placed on the third team by both the coaches and media, and Williamson was named to the all-freshman team by the coaches and media.
ETSU has seven players averaging over 7.5 points per game with Tray Boyd III leading the team at 11.8 per contest … Jeromy Rodriguez (11.5), Patrick Good (11.0) and Bo Hodges (10.3) are also averaging double figures, while Daivien Williamson (9.0), Isaiah Tisdale (8.7) and Mladen Armus (7.8) and are all at 7.5 points or higher ... Eight different players have led the Bucs in scoring this season (Mladen Armus, Tray Boyd III, Patrick Good, Bo Hodges, Lucas N’Guessan, Jeromy Rodriguez, Isaiah Tisdale and Daivien Williamson) and seven players have scored at least 20 points (Mladen Armus, Tray Boyd III, Patrick Good, Bo Hodges, Jeromy Rodriguez, Isaiah Tisdale and Daivien Williamson).
75 AND ABOVE
Since the 2015-16 season, ETSU has scored 75 or more points 82 times … The Bucs are 74-8 in those contests, while reaching the century mark in seven of those games.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
When it comes to ETSU’s scoring, the Bucs are dominating their opponents in the paint -- the Blue and Gold are +430 (1244-814) in that statistical category ... The Bucs are averaging 40.1 points per game in the paint, while also adding 12.8 second-chance points per contest, 18.0 points off turnovers and 30.2 bench points per game ... In ETSU’s win over Hiwassee back on Nov. 8, the Bucs scored 70 of their 109 points in the paint, while the bench added 65 points in that contest ... The Bucs’ largest deficit overcome this season was 18 against Sam Houston State back on Nov. 20, where ETSU rallied for a 14-point win, 77-63 … ETSU is also 15-1 this season when leading at halftime, 20-1 when having a higher field goal percentage than its opponent, 15-0 when shooting over 50 percent, 14-3 when making more free throws, 10-1 when shooting over 70 percent at the free throw line, 23-1 when scoring over 70 points and 15-1 when holding opponents below 70 points.
BUCS CONTINUE ON 3-POINT STREAK LIST
Since Feb. 16, 1987 in a game against Davidson, the Bucs have made at least one 3-pointer in 994 consecutive games ... ETSU was 0-for-8 in that 1987 game ... The Bucs currently rank as the sixth-longest streak in the NCAA, with UNLV topping the list.
BUCS RANKED IN COLLEGEINSIDER.COM MID-MAJOR TOP 25 FOR NINTH STRAIGHT WEEK
The ETSU men’s basketball team made its appearance in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 Poll for the ninth straight week as the Buccaneers are ranked No. 15 in the most-recent poll that was released on Monday night … The Bucs made their season debut in the poll at No. 14 back on Jan. 8, while they have been ranked as high as No. 8 … ETSU is one of four SoCon teams that are ranked in the poll, while the Bucs have played seven teams this season who are either currently ranked or receiving votes in the poll this week.
REBOUNDING STREAK ENDS IN REGULAR SEASON FINALE
ETSU has won the battle of the boards in 28 of its 31 games this season, including an 18-game stretch that lasted from Dec. 21 until the Bucs’ regular season finale against Western Carolina ... The Catamounts were plus-7 on the glass, 32-25, while holding ETSU to three offensive rebounds ... The Bucs are 1-2 this season when being out-rebounded with the two losses coming at Illinois (-2) on Dec. 15 and at Wofford (-13) on Dec. 1.
ETSU averaged a SoCon-best 4,429 fans, which is 1,312 better than the next closest team (Chattanooga) … The Blue and Gold rank 34th in average attendance among teams not in the Power-5, Big East and American, while the Bucs are averaging more fans than Tulsa (4,229), College of Charleston (4,202), MTSU (4,021), UNCW (3,962), Charlotte (3,787), Davidson (3,940), South Florida (3,691) and Pac 12 teams Stanford (3,900), USC (3,247) and Washington State (2,319).
ETSU AVERAGES OVER 5,000 FANS IN SOCON PLAY FOR THE SECOND STRAIGHT SEASON
Thanks to posting 5,520 fans in the regular season finale against Western Carolina last Saturday, ETSU averaged over 5,000 fans in SoCon play for the second straight season … The Bucs averaged 5,006 fans in their nine league home games this season … Over the last three years, ETSU has led the SoCon in total and average home attendance, while also posting the nation’s 15th best increase for average attendance from the 2015-16 season to the 2016-17 campaign ... During the last four seasons, ETSU has totaled 17 games with over 5,000 fans, including four sellout crowds in the last three seasons.
SHARING THE WEALTH
The Bucs posted their sixth game with at least 20 assists in their win over Mercer on Feb. 16, while combining for 65 assists their last five games … As a team, ETSU has six players with over 50 assists – the most by the Bucs since assists were kept as an official stat starting in 1983-84 … The Bucs had five players finish with at least 50 assists twice in program history – 2003-04 and 1991-92 … Both of those teams advanced to the NCAA Tournament, including the 1991-92 team defeating Arizona in the first round of the tournament … The Bucs rank second in the SoCon in assists per game (15.9) and 19th nationally in total assists (492).
The Mocs earned the No. 5 seed after finishing regular season play with an overall record of 12-19 and a 7-11 mark in SoCon play. Chattanooga has lost three straight and nine of its last 11.
Chattanooga is led by SoCon Freshman of the Year Kevin Easley … Easley, 6-foot-6 forward, averaged 14.4 points and 6.5 rebounds in 28 regular season games (27 starts) for the Mocs.
Redshirt junior guard Jerry Johnson Jr. is posting 10.1 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 31 games, while freshman guard Donovann Toatley is averaging 11.4 points and recorded a team-leading 81 assists in 27 games.
As a team, the Mocs are averaging 71.1 points and allowing 74.5, while shooting 44 percent from the field, 36 percent from beyond the arc and 69 percent at the free throw line.
Eight of the Mocs’ 12 wins came at home, while Chattanooga went 0-2 on a neutral floor this season – losses to Southeast Missouri State and Jacksonville.
Chattanooga exceeded expectations of the league's coaches and media members. It was picked to finish seventh by the coaches, sixth by media, in the preseason polls.
The Mocs are 23-16 (.590) all-time in the tournament's quarterfinal round.
Chattanooga leads the all-time series, 47-40; however, the Bucs have won a program-record seven straight games against the Mocs ... Saturday marks the 16th all-time meeting between the two programs in the SoCon Tournament, a high for either team against other SoCon opponents .. The two teams also met in last year’s SoCon quarterfinal game with ETSU winning 77-59 ... Chattanooga is 8-7 in the previous 15 match ups against the Bucs ... In the two games this season, ETSU averaged 85.5 points per game and held the Mocs to 67.0 (+19.5 scoring margin), while out-rebounding UTC by seven, 34.5 to 27.5 ... The Bucs hot 57 percent from the field (65-115), 44 percent from three (16-36) and 82 percent at the free throw line (27-33) in the games ... Tray Boyd III averaged 14.5 points and was 6-of-12 from beyond the arc vs. UTC, while Bo Hodges averaged 14 points, seven rebounds and four assists, while shooting 71 percent (12-17) in the two regular season meetings.
MORE ON THE RIVALRY
The rivalry between the Buccaneers and Mocs is in many ways directly related to the similarities between the programs. Both teams’ successes have mirrored each other since their time in the SoCon … Overall, the teams have accounted for 53 overall championships (23 for ETSU), 32 regular season titles (including North Titles) with the Bucs winning 13, 21 NCAA appearances (10 by the Bucs), each program has one Sweet 16 appearance, 15 Players of the Year (10 by the Bucs) and 15 Coaches of the Year (8 by the Bucs) ... The teams have met six times in the SoCon Championship game with both teams winning three of them ... The most points scored by the Bucs against the Mocs was 104 in the win back in 1990-91, while UTC scored 107 in the victory back in 1973-74 ... Thirty-one of the previous 87 meetings have been decided by five points or less, including five by one point.
Saturday’s game will be broadcast locally on ABC Tri-Cities and online via ESPN+ with Pete Yanity and Dean Keener on the call; CLICK HERE FOR LIVE VIDEO
Fans can also tune into “Voice of the Bucs” Jay Sandos on the radio call via WXSM-AM 640 beginning with the Atmos Energy Pregame Show at 2 p.m. p.m.; CLICK HERE FOR LIVE AUDIO
Live stats will also be provided via StatBroadcast… Fans can access live stats on their computers or mobile devices by clickinghere
Tickets for the 2019 Ingles Southern Conference Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships presented by General Shale are on sale now. Information about various ticket packages is below.
VIP All-Session Package (All Sessions - $250)
call the box office at 828-259-5736 or email Laura Weston, email@example.com.
Enjoy a reserved seat close the action and VIP Hospitality access. VIP Hospitality will open one hour prior to each session and will include pre-game meals and complimentary beer and wine.
General Admission Tournament Book - $120 - available through Ticketmaster or the U.S. Cellular Center Box Office (828-259-5736)
General Admission Single Session - $20 - available through Ticketmaster or the U.S. Cellular Center Box Office (828-259-5736)
Youth (6-12)/SoCon Student Single Session - $10 (kids 5 and under get in free) - available at U.S. Cellular Center Box Office
Single Session Group Rate (10 or more tickets to a single session) - $15 per ticket - contact Andrew Lawrence at 919-418-6545 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on Buccaneer men’s basketball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men’s basketball link.