Bucs to meet UAB on "Bartow Night"
Tubbs
Tubbs

Thursday, December 03, 2009

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (Dec. 4, 2009) -- After taking on one of the nation's top teams two nights earlier, the ETSU men's basketball team heads to UAB to meet the Blazers Friday evening at 8 p.m. inside Bartow Arena.

For head coach Murry Bartow, the game will be special considering his father, Gene, will be honored for his long career as a coach and athletic director at UAB. Murry was the head coach at UAB as well from 1996 until 2002.

The Bucs (4-4) fell to the Volunteers 78-66 in a game that was close throughout. Junior forward Justin Tubbs (Trussville, Ala.) led the way with a game-high 22 points in the outing.

For more on Friday's game, click on the game notebook link above or read the game notes below.

 

Buc bits

The ETSU men's basketball team has won three of its last four games, with that only loss coming at the hands of No. 11 Tennessee in a hard-fought 78-66 game that saw the Bucs within striking distance throughout ... Prior to the loss at Tennessee, ETSU had won three straight including a victory over SEC foe Arkansas on the road, 94-85, and the team's first conference win over the year 82-56 over North Florida ... The Bucs (4-4), who are now 3-0 at home and 1-4 on the road this sesaon, head back on the road for a matchup with UAB tonight ... ETSU just finished a stretch of six games in 12 days that included road trips to Chattanooga, Morgan State, Louisville and Arkansas, as well as home games against College of Charleston and North Florida ... ETSU had been without the services of preseason All Atlantic Sun Conference pick Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.), but the 1,000-point scorer and team's top returning player came back against North Florida in the team's last game, scoring 14 points in 21 minutes of play ... In Smith's absence, junior forward Tommy Hubbard (Boston) and junior guard Justin Tubbs (Trussville, Ala.) have stepped up their games In fact, Hubbard has posted double-doubles in five of his last seven games leading to his selection as A-Sun player of the week ... his week included a career best 32-point effort against the Razorbacks and a game-high 25-point effort in the victory over UNF ... Meanwhile, Tubbs posted a career best 29 points against CofC and 21 against Arkansas, to go with nine rebounds ... Currently, Hubbard and Tubbs lead the team in scoring with 17.4 and 16.1 points per game, respectively.

 

The series against UAB

ETSU has played the Blazers twice in the program's history, losing in back-to-back seasons ... The Bucs lost at home to UAB 72-57 during the 1984-85 season, and then lost on the road 63-44 in 1985.

 

Last time out

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (Dec. 2, 2009) - Facing the nation's No. 11-ranked Tennessee Volunteers, the ETSU men's basketball team found itself within striking distance late, but was unable to make a run when it was needed and dropped a 78-66 contest Wednesday night inside Thompson-Boling Arena ... Junior guard Justin Tubbs (Trussville) posted a game-high 22 points, and the Bucs also got double-digit scoring from junior forward Tommy Hubbard (Boston) with 11 and freshman point guard Sheldon Cooley (Tampa) with 10, but despite those efforts ETSU could do no more than give the Vols a significant scare ... Against a team that prides itself on forcing turnovers, the Bucs only turned it over 13 times and shot well both from the floor (44 percent) and free throw line (85 percent). ETSU also held its own in the paint, being out-rebounded only by two at 34-32 ... Tennessee came out on fire in the first half, shooting 75 percent from the floor over the first 10 minutes of play and building a lead of as many as 14 points at 26-12 with 9:39 left before the intermission. However, from there ETSU did not fold, outscoring the Vols 19-10 the rest of the way to finish the half just five back at 36-31 ... In the first 20 minutes, the Bucs held their own in most every statistical category, but UT dominated in the paint by outscoring ETSU 24-10 under the basket. ETSU stayed close thanks to a 75 percent clip at the foul line, where they were 6-of-8 and shot well above their season average of 60 percent ... In the second half, the Bucs cut the Tennessee lead to three at 42-39 with 15:36 thanks to a layup by Tubbs. ETSU stayed within striking distance most of the way in the second half and trailed just 64-58 with 4:37 left, but an 8-0 spurt by UT ended with a three-point play by Tyler Smith that made it 72-61 with 1:25 left. From there the Bucs got the game within single digits a couple times but were unable to turn the tide.

 

Bartow returns home

Having spent played and coached at UAB, Friday night's game will indeed be a special homecoming for ETSU head coach Murry Bartow ... Bartow played for the Blazers and served as an assistant at UAB under his father Gene ... He was the Blazers head coach from 1996 to 2002, leading UAB to the NIT in 1997 and 1998, and an NCAA trip in 1999 ... He has been the coach at ETSU since 2003-04.

 

Hubbard steps up his game, averaging double-double

Much has been written and reported about junior forward Tommy Hubbard (Boston) and his efforts to improve his offensive game, and those strides most recently led to being selected A-Sun Player of the Week ... Already considered one of the best defenders in the A-Sun, Hubbard posted a 32-point and 10-rebound effort in the win over Arkansas and dropped in another game-high 26 in the win over UNF ... He currently leads the Bucs with 17.4 points per game and 9.4 rebounds a contest ... while he has posted double-doubles in five of the last seven games, his efforts began to pay off on the offensive end against Chattanooga back on Nov. 17 ... Setting career bests for points (26) and rebounds (13), Hubbard collected his first career double-double against the Mocs ... In addition, he hit his first 3-point shot in three seasons with the Bucs, and didn't stop there -- ultimately finishing with four long-range bombs on the night.

 

Record setting night from the arc for Bucs

Hitting on 11-of-14 shots from 3-point range against Arkansas, the Bucs put their name in a multiple of record books ... First, those numbers set a new school record for 3-point field goal percentage in a game with a 78.6 percent mark, breaking the previous record of 66.7 percent which had been done three times previously ... In addition, it was the best shooting effort in the "nation" this season for teams taking more than 10 shots in a game ... And it was the best percentage by a team in the A-Sun since Nov. 28, 1999 when UCF was 11-of-14 in a game against South Carolina state.

 

Tubbs getting it done for the Bucs

When junior guard Justin Tubbs (Trussville, Ala.) transfered out of the University of Alabama and came to ETSU, many expected the athletic guard to provide an immediate impact on the offensive end of the floor ... This has been the case ... Against Charleston, Tubbs posted a game high and career high 29 points in the Bucs win over Charleston (11/25) ... He followed that effort up with 21 points against Arkansas, and a game high 22 points in the loss to Tennessee  ... currently, Tubbs has eclipsed double-figure scoring in six of the Bucs first eight games and is second on the team with 16.1 points per game.

 

Sollazzo steps up on night ETSU honors Coy

Before the start of the Bucs' Homecoming game against Appalachian State (11/14), the ETSU community honored the memory of former center Seth Coy, who died in a car accident last summer ... His former roommate and friend, Adam Sollazzo (Tampa), now wears Coy's No. 43 jersey and against the Mountaineers he played inspired basketball ... Sollazzo set a career high with 13 points and hit two critical foul shots in the final seconds to get the win.

 

Bench play critical in win over Mountaineers

With only 21 points of offensive production from its starting five on Saturday, the Bucs got a huge lift from its bench against the Mountaineers ... All three ETSU players to reach double figures -- Adam Sollazzo (13), Justin Tubbs (11) and Sheldon Cooley (11) -- all came off the bench, and the Bucs got a total of 41 from the reserves as a whole ... With injuries costing the Bucs several offensive weapons, look for ETSU to continue to count on the bench.

 

Preseason polls pick Bucs middle of the pack

The ETSU men's basketball team was picked fourth by the Atlantic Sun Conference coaches and fifth by the league's media in preseason polls release Wednesday by the conference office ... The conference's two most recent tournament champions, ETSU (2009) and Belmont (2006-08) place fourth and fifth, depending on the poll. The Buccaneers edged out the Bruins for the spot from the coaches while the media gave the nod the Bruins. Both teams suffered tremendous losses due to graduation. ETSU must replace Courtney Pigram (Memphis) and Kevin Tiggs (Flint, Mich.), one of the highest scoring duos in the nation a season ago.

 

Big questions surround Bucs entering 2009-10

With the loss of seniors Courtney Pigram and Kevin Tiggs -- one of the most dynamic offensive duos in the country -- the Bucs have a lot of questions to answer on the offenisve end of the floor this season  ... Having averaged 78.1 points a game a year ago, which ranked 21st nationally in all of Division I play -- ETSU has lost 44.0 of those points to graduation when one includes now departed senior Greg Hamlin in that trio ... In addition to the losses on offensive, the Bucs' 13-man roster includes just eight players who have experienced actual floor time in college ... The other five players are either true freshmen, redshirt freshmen or walk-ons.

 

Big questions surround Bucs entering 2009-10

With the loss of seniors Courtney Pigram and Kevin Tiggs -- one of the most dynamic offensive duos in the country -- the Bucs have a lot of questions to answer on the offenisve end of the floor this season  ... Having averaged 78.1 points a game a year ago, which ranked 21st nationally in all of Division I play -- ETSU has lost 44.0 of those points to graduation when one includes now departed senior Greg Hamlin in that trio ... In addition to the losses on offensive, the Bucs' 13-man roster includes just eight players who have experienced actual floor time in college ... The other five players are either true freshmen, redshirt freshmen or walk-ons.

 

 

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