Spartanburg, S.C. – Having already accepted a bid and learned it would host a first round game in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament, the USC Upstate men’s basketball team learned it would face Towson in the first round of the tournament Wednesday night at 7 p.m. in the Hodge Center.
It’s the second time in school history during the Division I era that Upstate will take part in postseason play. The Spartans also earned an invitation to the 2012 College Insider.com Tournament and went 1-1 with a victory over Kent State.
Upstate (19-14) turned in another successful season under 12th-year head coach Eddie Payne on its way to posting the second-most wins in school history during the Division I era. The Spartans opened the season with a thrilling 64-63 victory at Virginia Tech to post the school’s first-ever win over an ACC school. Upstate went on to knock off South Carolina 74-68 later in the year for its first-ever win over a team from the SEC.
The Spartans finished 11-7 in conference play and reached the semifinals of the A-Sun Tournament for the second straight year, falling to eventual champion Mercer in double overtime in one of the best games in tournament history.
Upstate seniors Torrey Craig and Ricardo Glenn each earned all-conference accolades at the conclusion of the season. Craig was named to the All-A-Sun first team after leading the league in scoring while ranking fourth in rebounding. Glenn paced the A-Sun in rebounding, offensive rebounds and field goal percentage on his way to a second team selection.
Towson (23-10) finished in second place in the Colonial Athletic Conference with a 13-3 league mark and reached the semifinals of the conference tournament for the first time since 2009. The Tigers closed the regular season on a six-game winning streak, but were upset in the CAA Tournament semifinals by William & Mary.
Tiger senior forward Jerrelle Benimon was selected as the CAA Player of the Year for the second consecutive season, becoming the eighth player in league history to win the award in multiple years. Benimon led the nation with 11.7 rebounds per game and was also tops in the NCAA with 20 double-doubles. He also finished fourth in the conference with 18.9 points per game and was selected to the CAA All-Defensive team for the second straight season.
Per CIT policy, everyone attending a College Insider Tournament game must purchase a ticket. The policy includes current Upstate season ticket holders, as well as students and faculty & staff who receive free admission into the games during the regular season.