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Blazer Almanac - March 8
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Blazer Almanac - March 8
March 8
Since this is March, there are a lot of dates with lots of losses. That’s because every season, but one (NIT Consolation game in Final Four), has ended in a loss in March. Today, the Blazers record is 1-5. Ouch.

Today, UAB plays Western Kentucky in the second round of the CUSA tournament. The two teams have met each other three of the last four CUSA tournaments. The two teams have met five times previously, three times straight from 1985-1987 in the Sun Belt and in 2015 and 2016. UAB is 4-1 vs. Western Kentucky in conference tournaments.

The Games:

2000 – First game played on this date did not occur until 2000. The game was against Charlotte in the first round of the CUSA tournament, held in Memphis, Tennessee where the locals were all giddy about rumors of John Calipari being hired. UAB had lost 8 of the last 12, including the last game of the year against this Charlotte team, four days earlier by the score of 61-37. UAB was the 10th seed and Charlotte was the 7th seed. Eric Holmes was hot in this game, scoring 19 points in less than 12 minutes in the first half. UAB led 40-33 at the half. In the second half, Charlotte’s defense held Holmes to 8 points and LeAndrew Bass took over and had a career high 21 points. Charlotte came back in the second half and won 76-73. UAB finished their season a disappoint 14-14 and did not have a postseason appearance.

2001 – The following year, UAB had advanced to the second round of the tournament by beating Louisville on their home court, but their next game was against the #1 seed Cincinnati. The Blazers kept it close in the first half, and was down by one at halftime. With just under 15 minutes to play, the Bearcats went on a 7-0 run, but then went almost five minutes without a field goal. PJ Arnold sank two three pointers as UAB went on a 16-3 run and took a 66-61 lead. Bearcats refused to go away and hit a three pointer to cut the lead to two with 5:43 to play. Cincinnati took the lead with 1:28 to play, but UAB’s Will Campbell tied it with 1:02 to play. Bearcats went up again with 44 seconds to go and stayed ahead by hitting free throws. Bearcats won 73-70. PJ Arnold led UAB with 21 points. Igor Nikolic playing his last game as a Blazer made it one of his best. He scored a double double with 11 points and 10 rebounds in 28 minutes. The Blazers finished the season 17-14.

2003 – UAB closed out the regular season of Mike Anderson’s first year as coach on this date when they hosted #18 Memphis. It was senior day for seniors Eric Bush and Cedric Davis. The first 1000 fans through the door received a Blaze Mascot bobblehead. Memphis shot 73% in the first half, and built a 23 point lead in the game. They led by 23 with 4:02 to go, but Eric Bush closed out his career with three three pointers and two free throws in the final 2:39 to cut the lead to the final score of 90-79. Morris Finley had 15 points which made him the 15th member of the 1000 point club.

2008 - Five years later, UAB closed out the 2007-08 regular season at Memphis. After almost upsetting Memphis in February in Birmingham when they were #1, the Tigers, who were #2 at this point, put UAB through one of the worst losses in its history. Memphis showed why they were a Final Four team in completely destroying UAB 94-56. It was UAB second worst loss ever, only behind a 41 point drubbing by #1 UNLV in 1990.

2012 – Mike Davis coached his last game as UAB coach on this date in 2012. This was the second round of the 2012 CUSA championship in Memphis, Tennessee. UAB had advanced by beating Tulane and was facing the 4th seed, Central Florida, who had beaten UAB to close out the regular season. UAB shot 18% from the field in the second half and went on to lose 64-54. Cameron Moore, playing in his last game, struggled, scoring only 6 points, but his 8 rebounds gave him 325 rebounds for the season and he passed Carlos Williams as the all time single-season rebounding leader.

2017 – One year ago today, UAB hosted Charlotte in the first round of the 2017 CUSA tournament, held in Birmingham. UAB was the 7th seed and Charlotte was the 10th seed. UAB started slow in the first half, and Charlotte led by six points early in the first half. UAB countered with a 10-0 run. Charlotte cut into the lead and UAB led by 4 at the half. The Blazers led for much of the second half, but could not shake the 49ers, led by Jon Davis, who tied the game at 67 with 1:50 to play. The score changed hands a couple of times until Charlotte took a one point lead, 70-69 with 58 seconds to play on a three point shot. William Lee was the hero of the game when he threw down a dunk after rebounding a Hakeem Baxter miss with six seconds to play to give UAB a one point lead. Charlotte missed a three point heave at the buzzer, and UAB survived to play again by the score of 73-72. Dirk Williams led the Blazers with 16 points and Nate Darling had 11 points off the bench.
03-08-2018 10:04 AM
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