cosey

NCAA Tournament Primer: Eastern Kentucky Colonels

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Get to know all of the NCAA Tournament’s automatic bids here.

Conference: Ohio Valley

Coach: Jeff Neubauer

Record: 24-9 (13-5)

Rankings and Ratings:

– Kenpom: 141
– RPI: 113
– AP/USA Today: Not ranked

Seeding?: 14 or 15.

Names you need to know: G Glenn Cosey (18.7 ppg, 4.2 apg, 3.3 rpg), G Corey Walden (13.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 2.8 apg)

Stats you need to know: The Colonels rank 13th nationally in field goal percentage, shooting 48.9% from the field, and eighth in offensive efficiency (116.4). Offensively this is a very good basketball team, with Marcus Lewis (10.1 ppg) joining Cosey and Walden as double-digit scorers and three other players averaging between 8.5 and 9.8 points per game. If there’s a concern it’s the defense, with opponents shooting 48.3% from the field and nearly 36% from three.

Tendencies: Six players average at least 20 minutes per game, with Cosey rarely leaving the floor (36.1 mpg) and Walden playing just over 31 minutes per game. Those two lead the way, with Marcus Lewis being a quality supplementary option and forward Eric Stutz ranking third on the team in assist rate.

Big wins, bad losses: EKU managed to beat Belmont twice, and they also beat Murray State in the OVC semis. As for bad losses, the Colonels dropped conference games to both SIU-Edwardsville and Tennessee Tech.

How’d they get here?: The Colonels raced out to a 12-0 lead over Belmont in the OVC title game, then went on a 12-2 second-half run after the Bruins tied the game at 52. EKU, led by Walden (29 points) and Cosey (23 points), would go on to win 79-73.

Outlook: The backcourt of Cosey and Walden has the skill and experience needed to lead this team in tight games. But the defense may be an issue when considering the caliber of opponent they’ll likely face.

How do I know you?: Marcus Lewis may end up being one of the most explosive dunkers in the NCAA tournament field. Here’s an example of his jumping ability. The fun starts at the 23-second mark of that video.

VIDEO: Monmouth hits a game-winner, Bench Mob member tries to disrobe

King Rice
AP
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Monmouth used a 17-2 run in the final minutes to beat Rider on Friday night, a win that will keep the Hawks within striking distance of the kind of an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament should they fall in the MAAC tourney.

The run was capped by star point guard Justin Robinson, who buried this three with three seconds left to put Monmouth up for good, 79-78:

No. 17 Arizona erases double-digit deficit to beat UCLA

Arizona coach Sean Miller reacts to a foul call during the first half of Arizona's NCAA college basketball game against UCLA, Friday, Feb 12, 2016, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
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Allonzo Trier scored 15 of his 18 points in the second half and Parker Jackson-Cartwright scored 16 points in his second career start as No. 17 Arizona knocked off UCLA, 81-75, in Tucson on Friday night.

UCLA was up by as much as 11 points in the first half and took a ten point lead into half time, but in the second half, the Bruins were eventually done in by foul trouble and the stronger front line of the Wildcats.

Ryan Anderson and Kaleb Tarczewski were dominant down the stretch. The duo combined to score 12 of the last 23 point for the Wildcats, including the bucket that put the Wildcats ahead for the first time since early in the first half. Off of a missed free throw, UCLA’s Thomas Welsh battled with Tarczewski for the rebound, but when Welsh finally seemed to gain control of the loose ball, Anderson knocked it out of his hands and bullied through Jonah Bolden for a layup.

All told, those two combined for 20 points and 27 boards, seven of which were offensive. They also managed to foul out both Welsh and Tony Parker, although some of the calls that went against UCLA down the stretch were questionable.

The win keeps Arizona within a game of first place Oregon in the Pac-12 standings and tied for second with No. 23 USC, who will be visiting the McKale Center on Sunday night.