The East Central University men’s basketball team will be looking to remain at the top of the Great American Conference standings when they host Arkansas-Monticello, Saturday, Feb. 8 at 4 p.m. in the Kerr Activities Center.
ECU’s radio home for Tigers basketball in 2012-13 is Ada’s KXFC, 105.5, FM ‘The X-Factor’. Kenny Morrison returns to broadcast the games for his 17th season. Morrison, a 1987 ECU graduate, spent two seasons doing color prior to taking over the play-by-play duties during the 1997-98 season.
Fans who can’t be at the game can find links to live stats, live video (if available) and the KXFC radio broadcast on ECUTigers.com. Go to the men’s basketball schedule page. Fans can listen to the radio broadcast online or through the FREE KXFC App available in ITunes, Google Stores where apps are sold and www.kxfcradio.com.
The Boll Weevils are 15-7 overall and 8-6 in the GAC after falling to Southeastern in their last outing. UAM has a +7.1 scoring and +5.8 rebounding margin for the season, but they are close in overall shooting percentages at .465 to .440.
The Boll Weevils have two players that are averaging over 10 points per game and two more with nine. Brandon Wilson leads the team with 18.0 points and 7.7 rebounds per outing, while shooting .586 from the field. Jared Harrison adds 12.0 points and 2.5 boards per game.
Against the Boll Weevils
In the first meeting of the season with UAM, the Tigers fell 71-76 on the road. Free throws were the key to the game, with ECU going 14-of-20 and UAM making 29-of-41 shots from the charity stripe.
Junior Brandon Lucas led the Tigers with 15 points and five rebounds per game, while senior Chris Lee added 10 points and four boards.
Brandon Wilson and Jared Harrison were the top producers for the Boll Weevils. Wilson tallied 29 points and six rebounds, with Harrison added 17 points.
The all-time series with UAM is just five games old and dates back to Jan. 21, 2012 when they first played each other as GAC foes. The Boll Weevils have had a distinct advantage in the series, earning wins in all previous meetings.
Moving to the Top
For the first time since the Tigers made the move to NCAA DII, ECU is sitting at the top of its conference standings. The Tigers made the move up to first after defeating Southern Arkansas and a loss by Southwestern Feb. 6.
Making a Statement
The Tigers had a strong showing against Southwestern Adventist, scoring 122 points. The number was the most in school history, with the previous high being 117. It was also the first time since Jan. 7, 2010 that ECU had scored 100+ points in a game when they fell 104-128.
ECU finished the first portion of the 2013-14 season with a 6-4 record, marking the first time since 2007-08 that the Tigers were above .500 at the holiday break. They started 2007-08 with a 6-3 mark and finished 14-13 overall.
With the 62-61 overtime win over Southern Nazarene, the Tigers also surpassed their win total from the 2013-14 season, with nine. ECU also moved to 6-3 in the GAC, one more win in the conference than a season ago.
Winning the Unwinnable Road Trip
The Tigers had a great conference road trip, winning at both Harding and Arkansas Tech. ECU defeated Harding 93-83 and ATU 94-78. The wins made the Tigers the first team from the GAC to earn wins at both Harding and ATU in league history.
Lucas Earns GAC Weekly Honors
Junior Brandon Lucas has been named the Great American Conference Player of the Week for Dec. 9 after helping the Tigers earn two big road wins at Harding and Arkansas Tech last weekend.
Lucas led the Tigers to road victories at Harding and ATU as they became the first program in GAC history to pull off that weekend sweep. He averaged 23.0 points and 6.0 rebounds in the two contests. He shot 68.2 percent from the floor, going 15-for-22 and 5-for-7 on 3-pointers. He went 8-for-9 in the win at Harding.
Abundant Free Throws
Free throws became a large part of the Tigers win against the Wonder Boys, as both teams combined for 99 free throws in the game. ECU went 39-of-55 and ATU was 27-of-44 for the game. The 99 combined free throws set at GAC record. The old record was 81 set by Arkansas Tech (45) and Southwestern (36), Jan. 12, 2012.
Mitchell Up for Good Works Team
Senior Miles Mitchell was recently named a nominee for the 2014 Allstate Good Works Team. The award recognizes a select group of college basketball student-athletes who have made significant contributions to the greater good of their communities through volunteerism and civic service.
Mitchell is one of 43 nominees for the DII, DIII and NAIA section and the only member of the group from the Great American Conference. The team will be announced in February and will consist of five student-athletes from the group of 43.
Making a Difference Off the Court
On the court is not the only place that you can find a member of ECU men’s basketball team this season. Since head coach Ja Havens has taken over the program the Tigers have renewed their commitment to community service. ECU has been a part of several community service projects since the start of the school year, with an emphasis on youth events. The Tigers have been to several elementary and middle schools in the area to read with the students and to get to know their younger fans.
A coaching change did not stop senior Colby Carr from continuing his consistent performances on the court. Carr has recorded at least one point and one rebound in all 46 games since he joined the Tigers in 2012-13. The New Orleans, La., native is also not afraid to share the ball, dishing out an assists in the last 35 games for ECU.
Starting Out on the Right Path
For the first time since joining the GAC, the Tigers picked up a win in their first conference game of the season when they defeated Ouachita Baptist 81-54.
Tigers Picked to Finish 10th
The Tigers were picked to finish 10th in the Great American Conference in the 2013-14 GAC Preseason Poll as voted on by the league’s head coaches.
ECU received 28 points in the poll and were above Southern Arkansas, with 22 points.
The Tigers will start the final road trip of the season, Thursday, Feb. 13 when they travel to Weatherford, Okla., to battle with Southwestern Oklahoma State at 7:30 p.m. The game if the first of three-straight on the road for ECU before finishing the regular season at home.