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Final 12Score
Cal Poly443781
Texas Southern323769
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69


Cal Poly (13-19) vs. Texas Southern (19-14)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Wednesday, March 19, 6:40 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: UD Arena (13,409) -- Dayton, Ohio. Television: TruTV. NCAA Tournament Record: Cal Poly 0-0, Texas Southern 0-4. Series Record: First-ever meeting.

GAME NOTES: The Cal Poly Mustangs and Texas Southern Tigers will square off in an NCAA Tournament first-round contest at UD Arena to determine which squad will garner the 16th seed in the Midwest Region of the bracket and advance to the round of 64.

The winner moves on to play top-seeded and unbeaten Wichita State in the second round of the tournament.

Cal Poly will try to extend its Cinderella story by moving past Texas Southern into the field of 64. The Mustangs made it through the Big West Conference Tournament with wins over UC Santa Barbara, top-seeded UC Irvine and a title game victory over Cal State Northridge, 61-59.

Texas Southern went in as one of the favorites to take the Southwestern Athletic Conference title after having won its final six regular-season contests. The Tigers then went through Grambling State, Alabama State and Prairie View, 78-73, in the SWAC championship game.

This is the first-ever meeting between these teams on the hardwood.

Cal Poly, which had never been to the NCAA Tournament prior to this season, trailed Cal State Northridge in the Big West championship game at the half, 29-25. But the Mustangs made a comeback run in the second period, and slowly chipped away at the lead until they were the ones on top. Chris Eversley and Dave Nwaba, who have been the consistent go-to players this season, led the way once again. Eversley scored 18 points on 8-of-17 shooting, and Nwaba tallied 17 points with six rebounds and three blocked shots. Ridge Shipley added 14 points off the bench in the win.

Eversley enters the postseason as one of two players for Cal Poly averaging a double-digit point total. Eversley tallies 13.6 ppg, and brings down a team- best 7.1 rpg with 43 steals on the year. Nwaba adds 11.9 ppg, 4.9 rpg and 18 blocked shots for the Mustangs, who average 63.2 ppg and allow 63.4 ppg to opponents through 32 games played. Jamal Johnson has dished out a team-best 90 assists, and Joel Awich has blocked 31 shots on the season.

Texas Southern used a comeback effort in the second half of the SWAC championship game to end Prairie View's Cinderella run. The Panthers led at the half, 38-31, before Texas Southern sprang into action. The Tigers outscored Prairie View, 47-35, in the second half en route to the five-point victory. Aaric Murray notched a double-double with 27 points and 10 rebounds, adding a team-best four blocked shots. Madarious Gibbs netted 15 points with five assists, Jose Rodriguez scored 13 points and D'Angelo Scott chipped in with 10 points and five rebounds. Texas Southern shot 64.7 percent in the second half.

Murray has proven he's one of the better big men in the SWAC, and certainly one of the top scorers in the league. He enters the NCAA Tournament averaging 21.2 ppg to lead the team, netting 48.5 percent of his shots from the floor. He tops the squad in rebounding as well with 7.7 rpg, also registering a team- best 85 blocked shots. D'Aris Scarver is second in scoring at 13.3 ppg, and Rodriguez tallies 11.3 ppg for the Tigers. Gibbs comes into the game averaging a team-leading 5.2 apg mark, and Scott (6.1 rpg) and Rodriguez (5.7 rpg) contribute to a strong rebounding team. Texas Southern averages 76.2 ppg and gives up 73.7 ppg to opponents.

Whichever team makes it through this round has not only the near-impossible task of facing a one-seed, but is matched up with the unbeaten Shockers. Cal Poly had a great run in the Big West Tournament that included some strong defensive efforts, but Texas Southern is simply too good offensively to bow out to the Mustangs, who won't have an answer for Murray in the post.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Texas Southern 73, Cal Poly 66

03/19 10:31:10 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NOR 3
DUR 5
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
DUR
 
Final
WAS 3
PHI 5
Final
TOR 6
ATL 5
Final
DET 3
CWS 12
Final
MIN 2
CLE 4
Final
STL 5
CIN 2
Final
CHC 7
SDP 6
Final
BOS 1
BAL 4
Final
PIT 6
MIL 2
Final
HOU 4
ANA 0
Final
NYM 5
MIA 4
Final
TAM 0
NYY 9
Final
KAN 0
OAK 5
Final
SFG 4
ARI 1
Final
LOS 6
COL 3
Final
SEA 3
TEX 1
1:07pm Today
TOR
ATL
 
1:08pm Today
DET
CWS
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
MIA
 
1:10pm Today
TAM
NYY
 
1:35pm Today
BOS
BAL
 
1:35pm Today
PIT
MIL
 
1:35pm Today
WAS
PHI
 
2:10pm Today
MIN
CLE
 
2:10pm Today
HOU
ANA
 
2:10pm Today
KAN
OAK
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
SDP
 
4:05pm Today
SFG
ARI
 
4:10pm Today
LOS
COL
 
4:10pm Today
SEA
TEX
 
8:05pm Tonight
STL
CIN
 
Final
TOR 86
WAS 93
Final
GSW 106
NOP 99
Final
CHI 103
MIL 91
Final
HOU 118
DAL 108
3:00pm Today
CLE
BOS
 
5:30pm Tonight
ATL
BRK
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
POR
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
SAN
 
Final
TAM 5
DET 1
Final
STL 4
MIN 1
Final
NYR 3
PIT 4
Final
ANA 2
WIN 1
12:00pm Today
NYI
WAS
 
3:00pm Today
CHI
NAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
OTT
MON
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
VAN
 
Final
NOR 3
DUR 5
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
DUR