HCAC Men’s Hoops Tournament Preview
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GREENWOOD, IN – The 2011-12 HCAC men's basketball regular season has come to a close and the action shifts to tournament play this weekend. The winner of the six-team HCAC Tournament will earn the conference's automatic qualifier for the NCAA Division III men's basketball tournament.
Transylvania University (22-3, 16-2 HCAC) locked up the conference's top seed over a week ago, defeating Manchester 72-52 on February 11. The No. 14 ranked Pioneers captured the school's fourth men's basketball conference championship since joining the HCAC in 2001 and will strive for their first conference tournament title since 2009.
Transylvania posted an 8-2 record against the HCAC tournament field, while Hanover sported a 6-4 mark. Bluffton earned five wins against the qualifiers, while Rose-Hulman and Anderson tallied a 4-6 mark against their fellow competition. Defiance finished with a 3-7 record against the tournament field.
The top seed Pioneers saw an 11 game win streak come to a close on the final day of the conference season, falling to Bluffton 83-65 Saturday. Transylvania will take on the winner of Bluffton and Anderson Saturday night in the HCAC semifinals. Transy earned a season sweep of Anderson and split with Bluffton during the regular season.
Bluffton (16-9, 10-8 HCAC) has been playing quality basketball heading into the conference tournament. The No. 4 seed Beavers have gone 6-4 down the stretch and will look to move into the semifinals with a win over No. 5 Anderson Friday night. The Beavers and Ravens split the season series, with each losing on their home floor. AU (14-11, 10-8 HCAC) also closed the season with a 6-4 record heading into the tourney. Bluffton and Anderson will tip at 8PM Friday night at Transylvania University.
Hanover (16-8, 12-6 HCAC) finished four games behind conference champion Transylvania in the standings and earned the No. 2 seed in this weekend's tournament. The Panthers have lost three straight games, including four of their past five contests heading into the tourney. HC will face the winner of Rose-Hulman and Defiance in the other semifinal Saturday night at Transylvania. The Panthers earned a split with Rose during the regular season and swept Defiance during their two meetings.
Rose-Hulman (17-8, 11-7 HCAC) claimed the No. 3 seed and will play No. 6 Defiance Friday night at Transylvania. The Engineers split with the Jackets (13-12, 9-9 HCAC) during the regular season and will look for a win Friday to move into the conference semis. Rose-Hulman has gone 5-5 heading into tournament play, while Defiance won six in a row to make the tournament field. RH and DC will tip at 6PM Friday night.
The HCAC tournament championship game will take place at 2:00 PM Sunday afternoon from Transylvania University.
Tickets will be $5.00 per session ($4.00 for students and senior citizens). Children under the age of 11 are free.
2012 HCAC Men's Basketball Tournament Schedule
at Transylvania University