Feb. 19 – HIRAM, Ohio – Thanks to a victory on the final day of the North Coast Athletic Conference regular season, the Terrier men's basketball team has earned a first-round home game in the NCAC Championship Tournament.
Hiram is in the NCAC postseason for the third-consecutive year under Head Coach Chris Kibler, earning a first-round home game for the second time. The Terriers will play host to the Big Red of Denison University on Tuesday evening.
How They Got There
The Terriers earned the fourth seed in the upcoming NCAC Championship Tournament thanks to a 15-10 overall record and an 11-7 mark in conference play. Hiram put themselves in solid position in the middle of the season when Hiram rattled off nine wins in 11 games, including victories over six conference opponents.
Overall, the Terriers earned season sweeps over Ohio Wesleyan, Kenyon, Allegheny and Oberlin while splitting the season series with three other teams (Wabash, DePauw and Wittenberg). Additionally, the Terriers fell twice to both the College of Wooster and Denison.
Hiram's top victory of the season came against Wittenberg, who came into the game at Price Gymnasium ranked #3 in the Nation. The Tigers entered the game undefeated before the Terriers handed them a 94-71 loss.
In the victory over the Tigers, senior Kelvin Jones led the way with 25 points and eight rebounds while shooting 11-of-13 from the field. TJ Warren added 18 points and seven assists.
Throughout the year, Jones and Warren served as the one-two punch for the Terriers. For the second-straight year, Jones was the only player in the NCAC to average a double-double, averaging 15.9 points and 10.5 rebounds per night. Warren, meanwhile, averaged a career-best 10.8 points per game, while ranking first in the conference in assist-turnover ratio (+3.4).
Freshman Jalen Kirksey also helped lead the way for Hiram throughout the year, ranking first in the conference in steals (1.8) while scoring 11 points per game in his inaugural season.
The Big Red earned the fifth seed in the conference tournament by posting a 14-11 record, including a 10-8 mark in the NCAC.
Denison started the season off fast, winning six of seven games, including conference wins over Wooster, Kenyon and Oberlin.
The Big Red also concluded the season on a three-game winning streak, with victories over Allegheny, Wabash and the Terriers.
Denison boasts a balanced scoring attack with four players averaging over ten points per game. Maxwell Siwik leads the Big Red with 16.1 points per game, followed by Garrett Collier (11.8), Jack Coulter (10.8) and Matt Doyle (10.0) all who rank in the top 30 in the NCAC.
This season, Denison has gotten the best of the Terriers, securing both wins in the head-to-head matchup this season. The Big Red earned a 68-62 win on January 17 in Granville, before taking a 78-60 win in Hiram's home finale on February 14.
NCAC Tournament History
Since joining the NCAC in 2000, the Terriers have been to the NCAC Championship Tournament 11 times, including three of the last four seasons under Coach Kibler. Hiram picked up their first victory in tournament play in 2015-16, as the Terriers defeated Kenyon College 95-87.
Denison enters the NCAC Championship Tournament for the 10th-straight season. The Big Red have earned a spot in the semi-finals in three of the last six seasons, which included winning the NCAC title in 2015-16.
Ticket prices for the NCAC Tournament are set at $7 for adults and $5 for children (18 and under), NCAC Guest Pass holders and students WITHOUT an institution ID. Students with an NCAC institution ID will be admitted free of charge. All those who wish to attend are asked to enter Price Gymnasium through the Coleman Center lobby.