NASHVILLE, Tenn. - - Belmont University men's basketball returns to game action Saturday at Tennessee Tech.
Belmont had its streak of eight consecutive victories - and 14 out of 15 - snapped Feb. 8 in a 64-56 setback to Tennessee State. Belmont rallied from a 13-point deficit to lead 56-55, before the Tigers scored the game's final nine points.
Senior Austin Luke (Rowlett, Texas) had a game-high 10 assists for the Bruins. Luke, the nation's leading returning assist man, ranks sixth nationally in assists per game (7.3) and third in total assists (189). The 6-3 guard is Belmont's NCAA Division I era career assist leader and currently ranks seventh among all active college basketball players in career assists (624).
Senior Amanze Egekeze (Lake in the Hills, Ill.) had 16 points at Tennessee State his 59th career double figure scoring game. The 6-8 forward ranks among OVC leaders in eight statistical categories, including fifth in scoring (16.4) and third in 3-point field goals made (69).
Junior Dylan Windler (Indianapolis, Ind.) has emerged as one of the top two-way players in college basketball. Windler narrowly missed his 12th double-double of the season with 11 points and nine rebounds at Tennessee State. He is among NCAA leaders in double-doubles (11) and defensive rebounds (187), and has been named NCAA.com National Player of the Week and two-time OVC Player of the Week. Windler scored a game-high 24 points in the last meeting vs. Tennessee Tech (1/4/18).
Junior Kevin McClain (Jennings, Fla.) has continued his outstanding play this season, scoring 12 points at Tennessee State. The 6-2 guard has 18 double figure scoring games this season, and is averaging 13.8 points per game in league games. McClain has five or more rebounds in six conference games.
Freshman Nick Hopkins (Fayetteville, Tenn.) has been a welcomed spark off the bench for the Bruins. He had 10 points at Morehead State, and has 10 double figure scoring games this season. Hopkins is threatening Belmont's freshman single-season 3-point field goal record, with 55 makes to date.
Belmont head coach Rick Byrd served as an assistant coach at Tennessee Tech from 1980-83.
This marks the 19th meeting between Belmont and Tennessee Tech. Belmont won, 80-67, on Jan. 4 at the Curb Event Center.
Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. CT. The game will be broadcast on OVC Digital Network. The live play-by-play of the Voice of the Bruins Kevin Ingram can be heard on the Bruin Sports Network. In-game updates will be available via Twitter @BelmontMBB.