Mercer Defeats Tennessee in NIT; Faces BYU Next

Thursday, March 21, 2013

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - The 2013 Atlantic Sun Men's Basketball Regular-Season Champion, Mercer Bears, defeated Tennessee, 75-67, in the opening round of the NIT. With the win, Mercer will now face BYU in Provo, Utah in the second round on Monday.

The victory gives Mercer six wins in non-conference postseason tournaments over the past two seasons, which is tied with Kentucky and Stanford for the most in the nation over that span. The Bears won the Tournament with five victories last year.

The win also marks the sixth victory in the NIT for the Atlantic Sun Conference. The last came in 2010 as eighth-seeded Jacksonville defeated No. 1 seed, Arizona State.

Travis Smith led all scorers with 25 points including a perfect 8-of-8 from the free throw line. Langston Hall added 16 points with eight assists, while junior center Daniel Coursey contributed 15 points; his third-highest point total of the season. Jakob Gollon poured in 12 points.

Mercer shot 50 percent from the field (26-of-52), while holding the Vols to 37.3 percent from the field (22-of-59) and 7-of-24 from three-point range (29.2%).

The win improves Mercer's record to 24-11. The Bears now have 51 victories over the past two seasons. Tennessee fell to 20-13 on the year as Trae Golden led the Volunteers in scoring with 20.

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