Tiger/Savage Storm Battle Set for Thursday

The Game
Rivalry Week in the Great American Conference will be in full swing Thursday, Feb. 27 when Southeastern Oklahoma State comes to the Kerr Activities Center for a battle with the East Central University men’s basketball team at 7:30 p.m.

The Broadcast
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.

The Coverage
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.

Scouting Southeastern
The Savage Storm are 8-16 overall and 5-13 in the GAC after dropping thee of their last five games, with all the losses on the road.

Southeastern has a -2.2 scoring and +2.3 rebounding margin on the year. Despite its losing record, they hold a .460 to .418 shooting percentage advantage from the field.

The Savage Storm have three players in double-digits in the scoring column and one more a 9.4. Urald King leads the team with 16.5 points and 9.4 rebounds per game, while shooting .581 from the field. Taylor Smaller adds 11.5 points and 3.3 rebounds per game, with 55 percent of his shots coming from beyond the arc. John Balwigaire contributes 10.6 points as the final member of the trio.

Against the Savage Storm
In the first meeting with Southeastern this season, the Tigers came home with a 64-59 victory. Both teams made the same number of overall and three-point shots, with the key difference coming at the free-throw line. ECU went 15-of-23 from the charity stripe, while the Savage Storm were 10-of-22.

Senior Colby Carr led the team with 13 points and eight rebounds, while red-shirt freshman A.J. Moutry added 12 points and four rebounds.

Urald King and Darius Harris were the leaders for Southeastern. King garnered 13 points and 16 rebounds, with Harris adding seven points and 11 boards.

The Series
One of the longest rivalries in Oklahoma, the all-time series with the Savage Storm dates back to 1927-28 and has been contested 166 times since. The battle is so tight that the series is currently tied at 83 games each, with ECU having won the last game.

Black Out Kerr!!!
Thursday’s game is the annual Black Out Kerr Game. The first 200 fans will receive a free t-shirt courtesy of Patriot Ford. Fans will also have a chance to win $500 from the Alumni Association, gift certificates from Rib Crib, and someone will be crowned the Rib Crib Rib Eating King/Queen during halftime of the men’s game.

First in the GAC Tournament
The Tigers have gone from the lone team in the GAC to not participate in a post season tournament to being the first team to guarantee a spot in the 2013-14 GAC Tournament in Bentonville, Ark., March 6-9. This is the first time since the 2002-03 season that an ECU team has advanced to a conference tournament. The Tigers first game is Thursday, March 6, with the remaining teams in the tournament heading to local schools to visit with elementary kids, Friday, March 7.

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.

Making Improvements
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 was one of 43 nominees for the DII, DIII and NAIA section and the only member of the group from the Great American Conference.

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.

Consistent Colby
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 50 games since he joined the Tigers in 2012-13.

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.

Up Next
The Tigers will finish the 2013-14 regular-season at home, Saturday, March 1 when they host Arkansas Tech at 4 p.m. in the Kerr Activities Center. The game is the annual senior night where ECU will recognize its six Tiger seniors.

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