Tennessee Tech (7-5) vs. Bethune-Cookman (4-9)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, December 23rd, 5:30 p.m. (et).
FACTS & STATS: Site: Orleans Arena (18,500) -- Las Vegas, Nevada. Television: None. Home Record: Tenn Tech 4-2, Bethune-Cookman 3-1. Away Record: Tenn Tech 2-3, Bethune-Cookman 0-8. Neutral Record: Tenn Tech 1-0, Bethune-Cookman 1-0. Conference Record: Tenn Tech 0-0, Bethune-Cookman 1-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: The Wildcats of Bethune-Cookman shoot for back-to-back wins for the first time this season as they challenge the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles during the final round of the Las Vegas Classic at Orleans Arena this afternoon.
The Wildcats made the trip to Sin City riding a four-game losing streak, but managed to put that to bed with their 61-52 triumph over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Thursday. The win was just the fourth of the season for Bethune- Cookman, the second versus another Division I opponent after a 74-59 triumph against Florida A&M in conference play earlier this month.
As for the Golden Eagles, they won for the third time in four tries in the month of December yesterday with their 81-68 victory against Kennesaw State. The win was actually the fourth in the last five games overall for the program, the lone setback coming against West Virginia four days ago by a score of 72-53.
With respect to the all-time series between these two schools on the hardwood, this is the first-ever meeting.
Kevin Murphy registered a double-double with 21 points and a game-high 10 rebounds as the Golden Eagles defeated the Kennesaw State Fighting Owls by 13 points during the third round of the Las Vegas Classic at Orleans Arena yesterday. Also scoring in double figures for the Golden Eagles were Jud Dillard with 16 points, to go along with nine rebounds, followed by Liam McMorrow and Zach Bailey with 15 and 13 points, respectively. Zac Swansey tallied seven points and also handed out a game-high 10 assists. Tennessee Tech dominated on the glass as they beat the Owls by a 34-20 rebounding margin. A starter in all but one game this season, Murphy leads the program in scoring with 19.8 ppg, thanks in large part to his 42.1 percent shooting behind the three-point line. Dillard is responsible for 16.3 ppg and Swansey (8.1 ppg) 71 assists and 29 steals which is tops in both departments for the group.
Bethune-Cookman trailed by as many as six points in the first half, due to the fact that the team made just 2-of-7 shots behind the three-point line, but the squad picked up the pace a bit after the break by converting 5-of-9 shots out on the perimeter, en route to the nine-point win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. Adrien Coleman emerged as the lone double-digit scorer for the group with his 16 points, coming up a rebound shy of a double-double as he also led the team in that department as well. Anthony Breeze blew a chance to register a double-double of his own as he picked up his fifth personal foul while posting nine points and eight rebounds for the program. Heading into play in Las Vegas, Breeze was leading the team in scoring with his 13.1 ppg and was also tops in the rebounding category with 6.6 rpg, but still the team was getting beaten on the glass by almost six boards per contest and that had a direct influence on the team scoring just 58.7 ppg.
Between Dillard and Murphy, the Golden Eagles have a very tight scoring duo that will surely be a handful for Bethune-Cookman this afternoon in Las Vegas.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Tennessee Tech 72, Bethune-Cookman 59
12/23 11:19:28 ET