FIT Earn SSC’s 4th Seed In Men’s Basketball Tourney

By  //  March 3, 2013

Panthers Have Won Nine Straight Games

WINTER PARK, FLORIDA – Running the table in the second half of its Sunshine State Conference schedule has earned Florida Tech’s men’s basketball squad the fourth seed in the upcoming conference championship tournament.

The tournament will begin Wednesday and run through Sunday at Silver Spurs Arena in Kissimmee.

Florida Tech coach Billy Mims has guided FIT to a record of 16-10 overall and a fourth seed in the Sunshine State Conference men’s basketball tournament this week in Kissimmee. (Image courtesy of Florida Tech)

In the quarterfinal round, the Panthers (16-10) will oppose the fifth-seeded Tars (17-9) at noon on Friday. Both teams finished tied for fourth in the SSC and split their regular-season series. FIT was awarded the fourth seed by defeating top-seeded Saint Leo 76-50 on Feb. 16, while the Tars were swept by the Lions.

The winner will move on to Saturday’s semifinals to play either No. 8 Lynn, No. 9 Tampa or Saint Leo. Lynn and Tampa are set to play in the opening round on Wednesday with the victor advancing to play Saint Leo on Friday.

When FIT first met Rollins during the season, it was the Panthers’ second SSC game and the Tars walked away with a 74-62 win at the Clemente Center on Jan. 9. The Panthers redeemed themselves on Feb. 13 with an 87-73 win at Warden Arena in Winter Park.

FIT enters the tournament as the hottest team in the league as it has won nine straight games, eight of which were against SSC opponents.

Just earning the fourth seed and finishing the season tied for fourth with Rollins in the conference is remarkable considering the Panthers were in last place with a 1-7 conference record on Feb. 1.

Since they beat Barry on Coaches vs. Cancer Suits and Sneakers weekend on Feb. 2, they have averaged 10 more points per game than their opponents and forced an average of 17 turnovers a game. During that span, four Panthers have averaged double figures in scoring with Jermaine Jackson’s 19.8 points per game leading the way. Chris Carter averaged 16.7 points, Julius Reid averaged 15.8 points and Terrance Tubbsaveraged 15.3 points over the last nine games.

Discounted tickets for the SSC Championship can be purchased in advance of the tournament through FIT. A tournament book containing a ticket to every game is available only prior to the tournament for $48.

Single game tickets also are being sold for $8 in advance and $10 at the door on game day. Students from SSC institutions with school ID and children under six years of age are free.

To purchase tickets, stop by the Clemente Center or call 321-674-8032 Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.