Provided by South Plains College
HUTCHINSON, Kan. – After enjoying a day off from competition, the No. 1 ranked South Plains College Texan basketball team returns to the court tonight at 6 p.m. in the NJCAA tournament semifinal round and will face a resurrected team in Eastern Oklahoma State (32-3).
Two years ago the Mountaineers did not win a game and now they find themselves facing the top-ranked team in the nation with an opportunity to play for a national championship on the line. Eastern Oklahoma is currently ranked eighth in the NJCAA and knocked off fourth-ranked College of Southern Idaho 76-69 in the tournament's first round and then Spartanburg Methodist 78-70 in the quarterfinals.
South Plains has overcome slow starts in each of their tournament games to defeat East Mississippi (71-63) and No. 3 Monroe College (73-60), keeping an undefeated season and a chance to reclaim the NJCAA crown they also earned in 2008. No team since Indian Hills in 1998 has completed a season without a loss.
If they are fortunate enough to earn their 35th victory of the season – which would also be No. 300 for Steve Green as head coach of the Texans – South Plains will face the winner of the 8 p.m. semifinal game pitting No. 2 Northwest Florida State against No. 17 Seward County (KS). The championship game is scheduled for Saturday evening at 8 p.m.