WKU basketball begins final weekend of season against Charlotte


WKU basketball has had an up and down season. The team started the season 2-3 in the month of November, and lost three straight games in a full weeks span. Those three loses were to teams who are having pretty solid seasons. – Minnesota, Belmont, and Stony Brook.

After that bad streak, the Tops then went on to win two straight before getting blown out by Murray State in Murray. The guys regrouped, again, and started playing very well by winning an extremely tough game at Ole Miss, a home win over Chicago State, a loss (but awesome fight by WKU) to the Louisville in Diddle, and then went on to nine straight games – seven of which were Conference USA matches. So as you can see, there have been bumps in the road this season, but the fella’s have fought through them and are looking to win their third straight contest tonight.

Ray Harper and his Hilltoppers are in Charlotte, North Carolina to take on the Charlotte 49ers in a C-USA showdown tonight. It will be WKU’s second-to-last conference game of the season (they’ll finish the regular season at Old Dominion on Saturday).

Charlotte is a very tough team, even if their record just doesn’t show it. The 49ers are currently 13-16 overall, 6-10 in Conference USA, and are tied with Florida International for 11th place in the conference. The team had some tough games on their schedule to open this season, but a couple were great wins and most were depressing losses – won at South Carolina by two, lost by three at home to then #17 Miami, lost by three Georgetown, and a one point loss at Georgia Tech. You may think that is not very good, but considering the team lost their head coach Alan Major at the beginning of the season (leave of absence due to health reasons). Charlotte is coming off a 77-76 win at Rice and have alternated wins and loses over their last six contests, including taking Louisiana Tech into overtime.

The Hilltoppers and 49ers met previously this season – back on January 8th in Diddle Arena in WKU’s second game of their inaugural C-USA season. Charlotte was a popular favorite over the Tops, but the Niners didn’t have enough in the tank as the Toppers escaped with a 74-66 victory to win their second conference game. Back on that Thursday night in Bowling Green, T.J. Price led the way for the Hilltoppers with 21 points (along with four rebounds and three assists), while George Fant added 18 points and 11 boards. For Charlotte in the loss, Torin Dorn went all out for the 49ers by dropping 26 points and 10 rebounds. Dorn is an outstanding athlete who leads his team in both scoring and rebounding. The crazy thing is, Torin hardly ever starts. As you can tell, he is pretty dang good and the Topper bigs will have to keep him guarded the whole 40 minutes tonight. WKU has won two straight while the 49ers have won one straight.

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Charlotte is a 4.5 point favorite over the Tops on their Senior Night tonight, but the Hilltoppers will try to overlook that and win their third straight and fight for that fourth seed in the upcoming Conference USA Tournament in Birmingham, Alabama. And, as we all know, there’s something special about the Hilltoppers in March.

After the game concludes in Charlotte, check back here at Bluegrass Dominion for you postgame recap and game grades.

Here’s the game info you’ll need for tonight’s contest:

Date: March 5th, 2015

Tip-off Time: 6:00 p.m. CT

TV Channel: Fox College Sports, WKU PBS (Bowling Green), WBNA (Louisville)

Radio: Sam FM 100.7 FM (WKLX) (Full list of WKU IMG Sports Network affiliates)

Live Stream: Fox Sports Go app (Not available everywhere)

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