Jan. 31, 2011
Cullowhee, N.C. -
Western Carolina learned Monday evening that it will host the Eastern Kentucky Colonels out of the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) in this year's ESPN BracketBusters game to be played in the Ramsey Center on Saturday, Feb. 19. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:00 pm.
Western Carolina is one of four teams from the Southern Conference participating in this year's ESPN BracketBusters event. The College of Charleston will host a different breed of Catamount in its scheduled game as Vermont travels to the Carolina First Arena to face the Cougars at 5:00 pm on Sat., Feb. 19 in the lone SoCon televised game on ESPNU. Also hosting a game in the BracketBusters is Wofford which will entertain Ball State in Spartanburg in its first-ever game in the event.
Two SoCon schools will travel this year as Appalachian State visits in-state foe High Point while Davidson travels to Clinton, S.C., to face Presbyterian. HPU leads the series with ASU, 55-35, in a series that has been dormant since 1977-78, while Davidson has split the two previous meetings with the Blue Hose, last meeting in 1965.
It is just the second year that WCU has participated in the ESPN BracketBusters event. One year ago, Western Carolina played at Kent State at the M.A.C. Center. The home-standing Golden Flashes rallied inside the games' final four minutes to regain the lead before withstanding a late push by the hard-charging WCU squad, edging the Catamounts 74-72, to avenge the overtime defeat from the previous season.
Western Carolina trails in the all-time series with Eastern Kentucky, 0-2, with both previous hardwood meetings held in Richmond, Ky. After back-to-back match-ups in the 1969-70 and 1970-71 seasons, the series has endured a 41-year hiatus.
Eastern Kentucky (12-9, 6-5 OVC, sixth) has four players currently averaging double-digit scoring on a squad that is very similar to WCU with four seniors. The Colonels, who are currently 5-5 outside of Richmond, Ky., this season, will play three-consecutive home games before visiting Cullowhee for the first-time ever in men's basketball competition.
The two squads have one common opponent on the year as both teams scored a road win over Georgia Southern in Statesboro. EKU downed the Eagles, 79-73, back on Jan. 2 while the Catamounts cruised past GSU, 81-58, on Jan. 5.
This season, 114 teams from across the nation will compete in the ESPN BracketBusters event on Feb. 18, 19 and 20. Eleven games are scheduled to be televised on either ESPN2 or ESPNU.
Currently in second-place in the Southern Conference's North Division, Western Carolina (9-12, 5-5 SoCon) visits divisional foe Elon on Wednesday night at the Alumni Gym. WCU downed the Phoenix, 70-63, in Cullowhee back on Jan. 13. The Catamounts have not won at Elon or swept the Phoenix in a regular season since 2005, having dropped 13 of the last 14 road meetings in the series.
Western Carolina at Elon - Game Notes
Wednesday night's game will be broadcast by the Catamount Sports Network with a 6:30 pm air time ahead of the 7 pm tip-off. Fans can follow all of the action locally on WWCU-FM, Power 90dot5 in Cullowhee, 680 AM WRGC in Sylva and 920 AM WPTL in Canton. Live streaming audio is also available online through www.CatamountSports.com.