UNCG Men’s Basketball Earns No. 3 Seed in SoCon Tournament
SoCon Basketball Tournament Central
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNC Greensboro (UNCG) men’s basketball team will enter the 2023 Southern Conference (SoCon) Men’s Basketball Tournament as the No. 3 seed. The Spartans are set to face the No. 6 Wofford Terriers on Saturday, March 3 with a start time of 8:30 p.m.
The Spartans versus the Terriers quarterfinal matchup will be broadcast on ESPN+ and Nexstar affiliates.
No. 3 seed UNCG (20-11, 14-4), which entered its game at ETSU on Saturday with the chance to claim a share of the SoCon regular-season title, will take on No. 6 seed Wofford (16-15, 8-10) on Saturday at 8:30 p.m. The Spartans, who put together their sixth 20-win season in their last seven tries, earned the regular-season sweep of the Terriers, who won three of four to end the regular season and avoid Friday’s first round. Wofford is 5-3 against UNCG in SoCon tournament play, with the squads last meeting in the 2019 title game, which the Terriers won 70-58. The Spartans will be trying for their third SoCon tournament title in the last six seasons.
Furman locked up a share of its first regular-season title since 2016-17 and its first No. 1 seed since 1991 with its 93-79 win at Samford on Saturday. The Paladins entered the game trailing the Bulldogs by a game in the SoCon standings, with the winner guaranteed the top seed in the tournament. Mike Bothwell, the league’s leading scorer, stepped up to the challenge by scoring Furman’s first 18 points in the contest, finishing with a game-high 35 to lead the Paladins to the win. Furman enters postseason play with a 24-7 overall record, one shy of its school record for wins, and went 15-3 in SoCon play. The Paladins, seeking their first SoCon tournament title since 1980, reached the championship game last season, falling on a buzzer beater in overtime to Chattanooga.
Furman opens tournament play Saturday, March 4, at noon, where it will face either No. 8 seed Mercer or No. 9 seed The Citadel, who will square off in the first round on Friday at 5 p.m. The Bears and the Bulldogs will be meeting for the second straight game, as the squads played each other on Saturday, with Mercer claiming a 72-50 win to complete the regular-season sweep and move to 13-18 overall and 6-12 in league games. The Citadel finished the regular season 10-21 overall and 5-13 in SoCon play.
Furman, which swept Mercer in the regular season and split with The Citadel, is 3-0 in the SoCon tournament against the Bears and 6-2 against Bulldogs. Mercer is 1-0 in the tournament against The Citadel.
Friday’s second contest will see No. 7 seed and defending tournament champion Chattanooga (15-16, 7-11) take on No. 10 seed VMI (7-24, 2-16) at 7:30 p.m. The Mocs, in their first season under former VMI head coach Dan Earl, fell 86-74 at Wofford on Saturday to close the regular season in a battle for the No. 6 seed and a first-round bye. The Keydets dropped an 85-66 decision at Western Carolina on Saturday to close the regular season. UTC swept the regular-season series against VMI and is 5-2 against the Keydets in the SoCon tournament.
The winner of that contest will advance to face No. 2 seed Samford on Saturday, March 4, at 6 p.m. The Bulldogs, who turned in their second straight 20-win season at 21-10 overall and 15-3 in conference play, claimed a share of their first regular-season SoCon title with Wednesday’s 75-70 win at Chattanooga and will now turn their attention to trying to win their first SoCon tournament title. The Bulldogs, who swept both squads during the regular season, are 0-3 against Chattanooga in the SoCon tournament and 2-1 against VMI.
Saturday’s second game will see No. 4 seed Western Carolina (17-14, 10-8) take on No. 5 seed ETSU (12-19, 8-10) at 2:30 p.m. The Catamounts, who wrapped up their regular season with their big win over VMI, finished four spots ahead of where they were predicted in the preseason polls and their No. 4 seed is their best since holding the same seed in 2015. ETSU finished the regular season on a high note with a 63-62 win over rival UNCG, denying the Spartans a share of the regular-season title and ensuring that the Bucs would avoid Friday’s opening round. Western Carolina, which swept the regular-season series against ETSU, is 3-2 against the Bucs in SoCon tournament play.
2023 Ingles Southern Conference Men’s Basketball Championship
Friday, March 3 (ESPN+)
Game 1 – (8) Mercer vs. (9) The Citadel, 5 p.m.
Game 2 – (7) Chattanooga vs. (10) VMI, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 4 (ESPN+/Nexstar)
Game 3 – (1) Furman vs. Game 1 winner, 12 p.m.
Game 4 – (4) Western Carolina vs. (5) ETSU, 2:30 p.m.
Game 5 – (2) Samford vs. Game 2 winner, 6 p.m.
Game 6 – (3) UNCG vs. (6) Wofford, 8:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 5
Game 7 – Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 4 p.m. (ESPNU)
Game 8 – Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner, 6:30 p.m. (ESPNEWS)
Monday, March 6 (ESPN)
Championship game, 7 p.m.
Courtesy of Denise Archetto
Assistant Athletic Director For Strategic Communications