BARBOURVILLE, Ky. --
The Union College men's basketball team will take on No. 1 overall seed Walsh University in First Round of the 2011 NAIA Men's Basketball National Championship on Wednesday, March 9. Tip-off is scheduled for 5 p.m. EST. The tournament, who's entire 32-team field was announced on Wednesday night, will be contested at the College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, Mo.
Union, 16-15 on the year and led by second year head coach Sean Gillespie
, make their first appearance in the NAIA National Tournament since the 1967-68 season.
The Bulldogs earned an automatic bid to the tournament after winning the 2011 Appalachian Athletic Conference tournament championship this past Monday night over Reinhardt, 68-67 in a thriller. Union has been led all season by sophomore forward Turrell Morris
, who was named the AAC's Co-Player of the Year after leading the conference in points per game (18.77) and rebounds per game (10.57) on the year.
The Bulldogs will face a stern test in the first round when when they meet Walsh, who is no stranger to success at the National Tournament in recent years.
The Cavaliers, 29-1 on the year and led by seventh year head coach Jeff Young, won the NAIA Division II National Title in 2005, and were the national runners-up a season ago. Walsh captured the American Mideast Conference's regular and tournament championships and is led statistically by guard Lamar Skeeter, who is averaging 17 points per game.
All-time, Union and Walsh have only played once during the 1991-92 season, with the Cavaliers winning 80-76.
Fans are reminded to stay with UCBulldogs.com for more information on the Bulldogs' appearance in the National Tournament as it becomes available.
Link to the 2011 NAIA Division II Men's Basketball National Championship Bracket.