High Point MBB Opens CIT vs. Maryland Eastern Shore Wednesday

HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University men’s basketball team (22-9, 13-5) opens the 2015 CollegeInsider.com Tournament with a home contest Wednesday vs. Maryland Eastern Shore (18-14, 11-5 MEAC) inside the Millis Center. The game marks HPU’s second ever appearance in the CIT (2013).

Tip-off between the Panthers and Hawks is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday’s game will be streamed on CollegeInsider.com, with Ford Martin (play-by-play) and Sean Hamilton (color commentary) handling broadcast duties. In addition, “Voice of the Panthers” Evan Lepler and Stafford Stephenson also will call the game on the High Point Panthers Radio Network, with pre-game coverage beginning at 6:30 p.m.


• HPU is making its school record third-consecutive postseason appearance. A victory would give the Panthers their first postseason win in school history.

• High Point claimed a share of the 2014-15 Big South regular season title. The Panthers are the first team since Winthrop (2004-07) to win three consecutive Big South regular season championships.

• The Panthers are one of just six programs nationally to win three-straight regular season league titles. The others are Gonzaga (WCC), Kansas (Big 12), Davidson (SoCon/A10), Stephen F. Austin (Southland) and Harvard (Ivy).

• HPU’s 22 wins are tied for the most in the program’s Div. I history. The 20-win season is the second in HPU’s Div. I history and 18th all-time.

• The Panthers have set new Div. I program records for road wins (9), league road wins (6) and road winning percentage (.600) in 2014-15.

• Last time out, HPU fell to Gardner-Webb, 72-71 (OT), in Big South Quarterfinal action on March 6 in Conway, S.C. Redshirt-junior John Brown posted a game-high 33 points and 10 rebounds. The Panthers were the No. 2 seed in the Big South Tournament.

• Brown was named First Team All-Big South in 2014-15. He is one of just five players in league history to be named to the first team in three consecutive seasons. He is a 2015 Henson Award nominee, an nonor given annually to the top mid-major player in college basketball.

Over the past three seasons, HPU leads the Big South in conference wins (37), conf. winning percentage (.740) and is the only school to make three-straight post-season appearances (2015 CIT, 2014 NIT, 2013 CIT). HPU is one of just 37 programs in the country to post a conference winning percentage of .740 or better over the three seasons. That list of schools includes Duke, Kansas, Arizona, Louisville, Gonzaga and Wichita State.

A LOOK AT THE HAWKS (18-14, 13-5)
Maryland Eastern Shore put together an 18-14 regular season in 2014-15, including an 11-5 mark in MEAC play. The Hawks earned the No. 3 seed in the MEAC Tournament and were upset by No. 6 Hampton in quarterfinal action. The Hawks rank No. 34 in the country and lead the MEAC in 3-point percentage (.385) and are 40th nationally in steals. UMES is led by senior forward Mike Myers, who ranks No. 13 in the nation in field goal percentage (.588) and is averaging a team-high 15.8 points and 7.2 rebounds per contest. Junior guard Devin Martin averages 14.0 points while graduate guard Ishaq Pitt is distributing a team-high 4.2 assists per contest.

Wednesday’s game will mark the first ever meeting between High Point and Maryland Eastern Shore in men’s basketball.

High Point is 0-2 all-time in postseason play. The Panthers made their Div. I postseason debut during the 2012-13 season when the Panthers fell at UC Irvine, 80-71, on March 20, 2013. Junior guard Adam Weary posted 18 points and seven rebounds in the game against the Anteaters in his freshman campaign. The Purple & White earned their first ever NIT berth in 2014 and almost knocked off eventual tournament champion Minnesota before falling to the Gophers, 88-81, in Minneapolis. Devante Wallace (20 points) and John Brown (19) led HPU in scoring in the game. Wednesday’s game vs. Maryland Eastern Shore will be HPU’s first ever home game in postseason play.

With a victory, High Point will move on to the CIT Second Round and will play either Friday (March 20) or Saturday (March 21). Site and opponent are to be determined.