Trinity & Centre To Advance To SCAC Men's Championship Game
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Birmingham-Southern College is playing host site to the 2012 Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference men's semifinal basketball games. Official Tournament Website | Live Video
SCAC Semifinal Game One Recap
Centre College senior forward Greg Ross poured in a game-high 28 points and grabbed nine rebounds as the Colonels knocked off ninth-ranked Birmingham-Southern College, 77-58, in the first men's semifinal Saturday afternoon at Bill Battle Coliseum on the campus of Birmingham-Southern. Box Score
Ross hit on 11-of-13 shots from the field to advance Centre (18-8) to its seventh-consecutive SCAC men's championship game. Ross and the rest of the Colonels were nearly unstoppable on the day as Centre shot an astounding 62.5 percent (25 for 40) from the floor for the game.
Ross was not the only Colonel who had a huge game. Sophomore guard Collin Lopez scored 17 points on 6 of 7 shooting, including 3 of 4 from beyond on the arc. Sophomore Donovan Whiteside added eight points on 3 of 3 shooting and senior Jeff Mullaney added 11 points.
Birmingham-Southern, on the other hand, shot just 30 percent (18 for 60) on the game. The Panthers (25-2) connected on just 8 of 29 shots (27.6 percent) in the first half. The loss snapped BSC's 18 game winning streak and its 43 game home winning streak dating back to the 2008-09 season.
Centre built a 35-26 lead at halftime and never trailed as they beat Birmingham-Southern for the second time on the season. The Colonels won two of the three meetings between the teams during the season, including splitting the two meetings at Bill Battle Coliseum.
Birmingham-Southern came into the SCAC tournament in the top 30 of the nation in scoring margin (80.6) but was held to its lowest first half point total on the season. The Panthers scored just 28 points in their only prior loss of the season at Centre.
Greg Ross (CEN) interview | Greg Mason (CEN) interview | Chris Graves
SCAC Semifinal Game Two Recap
Trinity University advanced to its first SCAC championship game since 2007 with a 74-66 victory over Rhodes College in the second men's semifinal of the day thanks in large part to three players who scored at least 15 points. Box Score
Tiger sophomore foward Zach Lambert scored a game-high 22 points on 6 of 11 shooting and added six rebounds. Teammates Robert Kitzinger and Ryan Beall chipped in with 17 points and 15 points, respectively.
Trinity and Rhodes went back and forth the entire game in a game that featured 13 ties and eight lead changes. The largest lead by either team all game was a 10 point Trinity lead midway through the first half.
Rhodes was led by junior Andrew Galow and sophomore John Dunanvant who each scored a team-high 19 points. The Lynx received double-digit scoring efforts from Theo Hartwell and Kory Kilpatrick who scored 11 and 10 points respectively.
Trinity took just a one point lead (37-36) into the intermission after Rhodes went on a 19-10 run over the final eight minutes of the half.
In the second half, both teams seemed to trade basket for basket as each team shot over 40 percent in the second stanza. Both teams shot over 45 percent for the game.
Rhodes took its last lead with 3:53 left. The Lynx took a 66-64 lead on Dunavant layup. Trinity responded on its ensuing possession as Lambert hit a 3-pointer to take a 67-66 lead. It was a lead the Tigers would not relenquish as Trinity made enough free throws to keep the Lynx at bay.
Trinity will meet Centre in the 2012 SCAC championship game on Sunday, February 26 at Noon CT at the Bill Battle Coliseum on the campus of Birmingham-Southern College. The Tigers will be seeking their first SCAC championship since the 2005 season while the Colonels will look for their fourth straight league championship.
Ryan Beall (TU) interview | Pat Cunningham (TU) interview | Mike DeGeorge