The UNCW men’s basketball team is hoping the third time is a charm when it faces Hofstra in the quarterfinals of the Colonial Athletic Association tournament at the North Charleston Coliseum on Sunday.
During the regular season, each team recorded a 20-point victory on its home court.
UNCW, which tips off at 8:30 p.m. Sunday against Hofstra, will be well rested going into the tournament with eight days separating the end of the regular season and the start of the tournament for the Seahawks. During that time, UNCW coach C.B. McGrath has been game planning for Hofstra, and trying to improve his team’s defense.
“The defensive stuff that we did helps against every team, not just Hofstra,” McGrath said. “It’s just simple concepts that we need to keep drilling”
UNCW (10-20, 7-11 CAA) is the two-time defending tournament champion and the players are hoping past experience pays off.
“Just knowing what it takes, knowing what you have to do,” said UNCW senior Jordon Talley of his mindset. “Knowing you can’t do it yourself. You need a team to win a CAA tournament.”
“We are still coming in as confident as we can,” said UNCW junior Devontae Cacok. “It takes three wins to make it to the NCAA tournament. Anyone can win, anyone can lose.”
Winning the tournament is the only chance CAA teams have of making it to the NCAA tournament.
“This is the tournament. There are no do-overs,” said McGrath. “You can’t get to Game 2 without playing well in Game 1. I am treating this tournament like the NCAA tournament. If you lose, you go home and you’re done.”
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