Showing posts with label Western Kentucky Hilltoppers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Western Kentucky Hilltoppers. Show all posts

Monday, March 11, 2013

Davidson, Western Kentucky, James Madison Are In

The Davidson Wildcats extended the nation's longest winning streak to 16 games, capturing the Southern conference championship with a 74-55 victory over the College of Charleston in the tourney final. De'Mon Brooks led all scorers with 24 points and added eight rebounds.

Davidson the nation's top free-trow shooting team, made only 14 of 21 line attempts, but shot 55% from the floor while holding the Cougars to 30% shooting.

Western Kentucky took the Sun Belt title, winning four games in four days for the second straight season to earn the automatic invitation to the NCAA tourney.

The Hilltoppers outlasted a game Florida International squad, coached by Richard Pitino, son of Louisville coach Rick Pitino, by a 65-63 score.

Center George Fant scored 17 points on 7-for-14 shooting and snagged 13 rebounds to pace Western Kentucky.

A.J. Davis led all scorers with 26 points to lead James Madison to the Colonial Athletic Conference championship with a 70-57 victory over Northeastern.

The Dukes led early, took a commanding 40-18 lead into the break and coasted to the easy win.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Western Kentucky, BYU Advance; Top East Seed Syracuse Loses Fab Melo for Tourney

Tournament Update & College Hoops Player of the Day for Tuesday, March 13, 2012

First Four, Game 1: Western Kentucky 59 Mississippi Valley State 58 - The Hilltoppers of Western Kentucky have made a habit of rallying from sizable deficits through the latter half of the season and did it again to open the 2012 NCAA tournament in style, rallying from 16 points down in the final 4:30 to overtake the Delta Devils and advance to play #1 seed Kentucky in the South region.

The game was sloppy, but nonetheless, entertaining. Mississippi Valley State led 54-37 with under four minutes left to play, but turned the ball over repeatedly as the Hilltoppers stepped up the defensive pressure. Western Kentucky turned the ball over 29 times, but out-rebounded their opponents, 60-32. Shooting was horrendous, as neither team shot better than 36 percent. The Devils' Kevin Burwell led all scorers with 20 points.

First Four, Game 2: BYU 78 Iona 72 - Iona shot 57% and led by as many as 25 points in the first half, but BYU cut the lead to 15 at the break, down 55-40 and wore down the Gaels in the second half for the win. Brandon Davies scored 18 points with 15 rebounds and teammate Noah Hartsock dropped in a game high 23 points on 10-for-14 shooting, including a decisive three-pointer which gave the Cougars the lead for good with about two minutes to play. The Cougars held Iona to just 17 second half points.

Tourney Notes: In an unprecedented development, Syracuse center Fab Melo was ruled ineligible for the NCAA tournament by the school, throwing a serious wrench into the Orange plans. Syracuse was named the #1 seed in the East region on Sunday. Details are uncertain, though a number of media outlets are reporting that the issue is with Melo's schoolwork, which was a reason for his suspension for three games during the regular season. Syracuse faces UNC-Asheville in an East regional opener Thursday afternoon.

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Teeng Akol Sends 15-18 Hilltoppers Dancing; Harvard Snags Bid

College Hoops Player of the Day for Tuesday, March 6, 2011

Western Kentucky completed their assault on Sun Belt opponents with their fourth straight tournament win, a 74-70 victory over North Texas in the conference tournament championship.

6'11" junior Teeng Akol led all scorers with 23 points, a career high for the import from Sudan. Akol also had five rebounds and blocked four shots.

The Hilltoppers were left for dead on January 5 when a loss to Louisiana Lafayette left the team with a 5-11 record and coach McDonald was fired. Ray Harper was named interim coach at that point, but the team lost three more games in a row. The Hilltoppers then began winning a little bit, taking six of their last 10 conference games, but still finishing the regular season with an 11-18 record and a 7-9 mark in the conference.

With nothing to lose in the conference tourney, the Hilltoppers beat Florida International, Arkansas Little-Rock (West division champion) and Denver before Tuesday's triumph in the final.

At 15-18, Western Kentucky becomes the first team with a losing record to qualify for the NCAA tournament since 16-20 Coppin State qualified out of the Mid-Eastern conference in 2008.


South Dakota State 52 Illinois State 50 - The Jackrabbits of South Dakota State snatched away an important automatic NCAA bid with their win over the Leathernecks of Illinois State in the Summit conference tournament championship. Senior Griffan Callahan made a pair of free throws to force overtime as the Jackrabbits rallied from a four-point deficit at the half and then made the game-winning three-pointer in overtime for the win.

The 'Rabbits were the fortunate beneficiaries of Illinois State's largesse, because the Leathernecks were the ones to knock off regular season champ, Oral Roberts, in one of the semi-final games, 54-53, Monday. South Dakota State's win leaves Oral Roberts in hoops limbo, hoping to get an at-large seeding from the tournament committee on Sunday. The Golden Eagles won the conference with a 17-1 record and are 27-6 overall, their biggest win a 64-42 win over Xavier in December. Losses at West Virginia, Oklahoma and Gonzaga will work against them.

Detroit 70 Valparaiso 50 - Valparaiso took the regular season title in the Horizon League with a 14-4 record, but could not deliver the goods when it mattered most. Against a Detroit team they beat twice during the season, the Crusaders made just 2 of 18 three-pointers and shot 34% for the game, missing out on their opportunity to go to the big dance.

Instead, the Detroit Titans proved their mettle, taking the tournament championship and the automatic bid, despite an 11-7 record in the conference and a 22-13 record overall. Ray McCallum led all scorers with 21 points, adding six rebounds in the victory. Detroit shot 58% in the second half and ran away with the win. This will be the Titans first appearance in the NCAA tournament since 1999.

Elsewhere, Princeton defeated Penn, 62-52, leaving the Quakers a game behind Harvard in the Ivy League. A Quaker win would have forced a one-game playoff with the Crimson, but the loss gives Harvard, which finished conference play with a 12-2 record, the automatic bid.

There are 27 games on tap for Wednesday, including second round games in the Big East and opening rounds in the PAC-12, Big 12 and Conference USA tournaments. A few ore tickets will be punched when Lehigh faces Bucknell in the Patriot League tourney final and Robert Morris and Long Island battle for the Northeast championship. Both championship games are at 7:00 pm ET. Weber State and Montana duel for the Big Sky tourney title at 9:00 pm ET.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Hilltoppers Win in OT, Take 1st in Sun Belt

College Hoops Player of the Day for Thursday, January 7, 2010

As long as A.J. Slaughter and Steffphon Pettigrew remain healthy, the western Kentucky Hilltoppers should continue to be a major force in the Sun Belt conference and earn another trip to the NCAA tournament in March.

Slaughter, who leads the team in scoring, assists and steals, was on his game Thursday when the Hilltoppers invaded South Alabama, keeping their conference record clean with their second win in as many games with a 67-64 win on overtime. The 6'3" senior point guard led the scoring with 18 points. Pettigrew, a junior forward, complemented the effort with 16 points and 5 boards.

It was the 4th straight win, and 7th in their last 8, for Western Kentucky, who knocked off SEC rival, Mississippi St., 55-52, on Monday. The Hilltoppers lead the Sun Belt's East division with a 2-0 record. They are 9-4 overall.

There were no Top 25 teams in action Thursday.