The East Central University men's basketball team claimed a share of the 2016 Great American Conference Regular-Season Title with an 83-66 victory over Arkansas Tech.
2016 Great American Conference Champoinship Tournament Page
The victory tied the Tigers (21-7, 17-5 GAC) with Harding for the title and gives them the No. 2 seed at the 2016 GAC Tournament Championship, March 3-6 in Bartlesville, Okla. ECU will face No. 7 Arkansas Tech in the opening round, making it the second straight season that the Tigers will have to play the same team that they ended the regular-season against.
ECU was led by junior Braxton Reeves, who tallied 20 points, five rebounds, three assists and four steals. Senior Stirling Thomas added 19 points and five assists, junior Ishmael Donzo 14 points and six rebounds and junior Ben Brown-White tallied 10 points and four boards.
The Tigers opened the game on a 10-2 run and never let go of the lead throughout the game. After the first six minutes of action, ECU kept the advantage between seven to nine points for the next six minutes. They then added a 9-1 run to push the lead out to double-digits (28-13), with 4:45 left to play in the first half.
The Wonder Boys (15-13, 10-12 GAC) made a late push, but were only able to cut the disadvantage to seven (31-24) before ECU took a 34-28 lead into the locker room.
The first two minutes of the second half were event, but an 11-0 run by the Tigers, pushed the lead back out to 17 (49-32), with 15:30 left on the clock. ECU kept the pressure up the rest of the game and increased the lead to as many as 23, but never let it drop below 14 on the way to the 83-66 victory.
The Tigers rebounded from Thursday's game, shooting 55.8 percent (29-of-52) from the field and 47.8 percent (11-of-23) from three-point range. The advantage from beyond the arc became a key to the win, as ATU was held to a 6-of-19 mark.
The Tigers will face the Wonder Boys, Thursday, March 3 at 2:15 p.m. at Bruin Fieldhouse.