PREVIEW: @UTTylerMBB set to make ASC run in Alpine
UT Tyler (17-9)
at
Sul Ross St. (20-6)
2/22/2018 | Alpine, TX (Gallego Center) | Attendance: 562
1st2ndFinal
UT Tyler383977
Sul Ross St.454186
Stats at a GlanceUTTSR
FG Percentage.492 (32-65) .462 (30-65)
3P FG Percentage.357 (10-28) .400 (6-15)
FT Percentage.500 (3-6) .800 (20-25)
Offensive Rebounds119
Defensive Rebounds2720
Total Rebounds3829
Turnovers135
Steals08
Bench Points4635
Statistical LeadersUTTSR
PointsMelvin Anthony - 24
Tristen Licon - 14
ReboundsJohnell Lane - 7
Caleb Thomasson - 6
B.J. Hollis - 6
Tristen Licon - 6
AssistsSkyler Hadden - 3
Davis Moore - 3
Caleb Thomasson - 6
StealsTristen Licon - 2
BlocksChase Mason - 1

Wednesday, February 21, 2018
by Wes Bloomquist | wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

TYLER – The UT Tyler men’s basketball team will play at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday against Sul Ross in an American Southwest Conference Championship quarterfinal matchup at the Gallego Center in Alpine having won four of its last five regular-season games.

The Patriots (17-8, 10-8 ASC) are the fourth seed out of the ASC East Division, while the Lobos (19-6, 14-3 ASC) are the host institution after they won the ASC West Division for the second time in three years. The UT Tyler-Sul Ross winner will advance to the ASC semifinals where they will meet the UT Dallas-Concordia winner at 7:30 p.m. on Friday. The ASC Championship finals are set for 6 p.m. on Saturday with the winner earning the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Division III tournament.

“I love our team’s mindset,” UT Tyler coach Jamon Copeland said. “They are attacking every day and are excited about it. Our guys are excited every day about getting to work and that’s made this season a lot of fun.”

Championship LinksHost Site | Bracket | History | Records

UT Tyler has put together one of its winningest seasons in program history, needing to beat SRSU on Thursday to match the all-time wins record by the 2012-13 team that had 18 victories. The Patriots enter the postseason having led the ASC with a 50.2 shooting percentage, 487 total assists and 19.5 assists per game. The assist total is a UT Tyler record, while the team is second in the ASC with a 37.6 shooting percentage on 3-pointers this season and is fourth in the conference with 213 3-pointers made. UTT is averaging 88.4 points per game and is limiting opponents to 81.9 per which is the sixth best in the ASC, while the Lobos are the top defensive team in the conference by limiting opponents to 72.9 points per game. Sul Ross won the regular-season matchup by an 80-58 margin back on Jan. 6 in Alpine.

UT Tyler senior point guard Josh Tatum leads the Patriots and the ASC with 6.0 assists per game and 149 total assists which is a single-season program record. A Keller native, Tatum is the all-time career leader in assists at UT Tyler despite only playing two seasons with the Patriots after starting his career at Weatherford College. The all-time single-season assist record in the ASC is 229 by Daniel Martinez for McMurry in the 2000 season. Tatum is also seventh in the ASC with 39 steals and third with a 2.87 turnover-to-assist ratio.

At the post, UT Tyler sophomore Emeka Obukwelu has put together one of the most dominant seasons in program history where he is leading the team with 19.7 points and 7.9 rebounds per game. A Plano native, Obukwelu leads the ASC with nine double-doubles and is sixth in the nation with a 68.1 shooting percentage and eighth with 218 field goals made. He enter enters the postseason with 492 points which is the second most in program history and only behind the 505 points from Brandon Weasby in the 2004-05 season. His scoring average of 19.7 is also second behind that of Weasby’s 20.2. Obukwelu scored a career-high 43 points in a win over Rhodes College earlier this season and has scored in double figures in 23 of 25 games this season.

UT Tyler senior Melvin Anthony missed some action in the middle of the season due to injury but is back for the Patriots as they enter the postseason. A three-year starter, the Killeen native is averaging 14.5 points and 6.8 rebounds per game in his final year. Anthony, while has hit 29 3-pointers and is shooting 45.3 from distance, grabbed nine rebounds last Thursday in the win at Belhaven and has three double-doubles this season. He scored a season-high 30 points and grabbed 10 rebounds against Mary Hardin-Baylor to highlight his senior campaign. Beyond the arc, UT Tyler sophomore Johnell Lane leads the Patriots by hitting 65 3-pointers at a 39.6 percentage. A Gonzales, Louisiana native, Lane is coming off matching his career-high with 26 points last Saturday at Louisiana College where he drilled six 3-pointers in the over-time win. He was 6-for-15 from beyond the arc which gave him six 3-pointers for the third time this season and 12 times with three or more 3s in a game. Lane is averaging 13.6 points per game and is adding 4.7 rebounds.

UT Tyler senior Skyler Hadden has been one of the most consistent Patriots throughout the year where he is averaging 12.6 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. A Waco native, Hadden scored a career-high 27 points at ETBU and also had 24 against LeTourneau. He’s also adding 2.4 assists per game for the Patriots, while Chase Mason has hit 25 3-pointers and is at 6.0 points per game. The UT Tyler depth has been strong all season with Xavier Fogle adding 5.4 points per game, Cameron Frank at 4.8 points and 2.0 assists per game and Davis Moore having hit 30 3-pointers. A sharpshooter from Martin’s Mill, Moore scored a career-high 19 points in a win over Ozarks two weeks ago when he drilled 6 of 10 3-pointers and also scored 17 points against Colorado College when he hit five 3s. As a team, UT Tyler has hit 213 3-pointers and is shooting 37.6 percent.

UT Tyler is making its eighth ASC tournament appearance and will be looking to win its first conference title. The program is 1-7 all-time in the tournament with its only postseason win coming in a 104-86 victory over Concordia in the 2014 tournament that was played in Richardson. Sul Ross is hosting the tournament for the second time in its program history after also bringing teams out to West Texas in 2004 and 2016. The Lobos are making their 10th trip to the ASC tournament and are 4-10 all-time in the tournament. Their lone ASC title came in 2004 with a finals win over Mississippi College on their home court.

The NCAA Division III Selection Show is set for 11:30 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 26 on NCAA.com where the teams earning automatic bids and at-large bids will find out where and who they will be playing. The opening two rounds are set for March 2-3 and the sectional round on March 9-10. The 2018 NCAA DIII Championship will be held on March 16-17 at the Salem Civic Center in Salem, Virginia.