Tulsa Plays at Kent State in NIT

Tulsa, Okla. – Tulsa will play Kent in the first round of the on Wednesday, March 17th at 7:00 p.m. (ET)/6:00 pm (CT). Kent State won the Mid-American Conference regular season championship with a 13-3 conference mark, while posting an overall 23-9 record. Tulsa has a 23-11 mark this year, the fourth straight 20-win season for the Hurricane.

Printable 2010 Bracket Here: 2010 Bracket.pdf

Printable 2010 Bracket Here: 2010_NCAA_Bracket.pdf

Kent State lost to the Tournament Champion, Ohio, in the quarterfinals of the league tournament, 81-64 last Thursday. Tulsa won two games in the Conference Tournament coming against Rice and Marshall, before losing to C- regular season champion in the semifinals.

The two teams have played two common opponents this year. Kent defeated , Tulsa’s fellow C- member, in the second game of the season, 72-65, and posted a 2-1 record against member Ohio. Tulsa defeated another member, Ohio, at home earlier this season, 81-80, and lost at , 65-55.

This is the first-ever meeting between Tulsa and Kent State.

It’s the 26th appearance in postseason play for the Golden Hurricane, and the 10th showing in the for the two-time champion of the tournament. The Hurricane has won the title two times in the history of the tournament, capturing wins over Pan American, , South Alabama, West Virginia and Syracuse in the championship game of the 1981 tournament. Twenty years later, Tulsa won the crown with a title game victory, 79-60, over Alabama in 2001, after wins over UC Irvine, Minnesota, Mississippi State and Memphis.

Tulsa is making its’ second straight trip to the . Last year, the Hurricane captured a 68-59 home win over Northwestern, but fell to Auburn in the second round on the road, 74-55.

The postseason appearance is the third consecutive for Tulsa as the Hurricane won the inaugural College Basketball Invitational () Championship in 2008.

Senior Ben Uzoh leads the way with a 15.2 scoring average, while also leading the team in assists with a 4.6 average. He also grabs 4.7 rebounds from his point guard position.

Uzoh is the only player in school history ranked among the top-10 list for points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocked shots. His 140 games played in one shy of the school record held by Greg Harrington (1998-02).

Fellow senior Jerome Jordan, the school’s career leader for blocked shots with 332, has averaged 15.2 points, 9.0 rebounds and 2.4 blocks this season. He has posted 12 double-doubles this year and has scored in double-figures a team-high 30 times and grabbed double-digit rebounds 13 times this year. Junior Justin Hurtt has averaged 14.2 points for the Hurricane this season, while connecting on 38-percent of his three-pointers.

Kent also has three players in double-figures, led by 6-8 sophomore forward Justin Greene, at a 13.7 scoring clip, while also grabbing a team-high 6.8 rebounds. Senior Chris Singletary, a 6’4” guard, averages 12.0 points, while 6’2’ junior guard Rodriguez Sherman scored 10.7 points per game. Singletary and Sherman have each totaled over 100 assists this season.

Kent has recorded a 13-2 home record this year with the only losses coming against Wisconsin-Green Bay and Bowling Green, while Tulsa is 5-6 away from home.

The winner of the Tulsa-Kent State contest will play the Illinois (19-14)-Stony Brook (22-9) winner.

Updated 03-15-2010

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