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Blazer Almanac - March 10
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Blazer Almanac - March 10
March 10

UAB is 2-3 in games played on this date. Warning. Some heartbreakers in this report. Proceed with caution.

1994 - The 1994 Great Midwest Tournament was held in Cincinnati. The Blazers entered the tournament as the third seed with a 22-6 record. Robert Shannon had been named First Team All Conference. The first round opponent was Memphis who was the 6th seed and had struggled to a 12-15 record. The Blazers had not won a conference game in four years and with a senior dominated team, they hoped to go far in this tournament. UAB started poorly, and the score was 4-0 before the Blazers even got across half court, the result of two consecutive turnovers in the backcourt. UAB never led in the second half, but cut the lead to four several times, to only have Memphis push the lead further. Memphis won 91-86. Carter Long had 28 points and Robert Shannon had 26 points, fortunately the season was not over. UAB received an at large bid to the NCAA tournament.

2005 - UAB was the fourth seed in the 2005 CUSA tournament, held in Memphis and had received a first round bye. Their first opponent was the 5th seed DePaul Blue Demons who had advanced by beating Tulane. Donell Taylor had been named 2nd team All Conference and his brother Ronell Taylor had won the 6th Man award. DePaul jumped out to a double digit lead in the first half because UAB missed nine of their first 11 shots. UAB went on a 11-2 run to end the half and cut the lead to two at halftime.

In the second half, the Blue Demons moved out to a ten point lead with 9:41 to play, but UAB came back again. The game was tied at 56 with 1:17 to play after a Demario Eddins three pointer. Marquette had the ball, but was called for walking with 28 seconds to play. UAB got the ball and it looked as if they would not get a good shot off. Then Demario Eddins received the ball in the left corner and hit a beautiful three pointer with .8 seconds to go. UAB won the game 59-56. The Blazers advanced to play Louisville, the #1 seed.

2006 - The following year, UAB had advanced to the semifinals in the CUSA tournament,ent by beating SMU. Their opponent was UTEP, the third seed, who had advanced by beating USM. The 24th ranked Blazers maintained a lead throughout the game, but could not get a comfortable lead. The Miners trailed by three, 62-59 with 4.6 seconds left when Kevin Hednerson was fouled by Lawrence Kinnard on a three point shot. He missed the first, made the second and then deliberately missed the third shot. UTEP got a tip at the basket to tie the game, but the tip bounced off the rim and UAB won 63-60 to advance to the championship game.

2011 - UAB had won the CUSA regular season and was the #1 seed in the tournament, held in El Paso. It was the first time UAB had been the #1 seed since 1990. The Blazers had racked up a lot of post season awards. Aaron Johnson and Jamarr Sanders were first team All Conference. Cameron Moore was on the second team. Aaron Johnson had been named CUSA player of the year and Mike Davis was Coach of the Year. UAB was riding high and looking forward to an enjoyable run in El Paso. Their first opponent was the 8th seed whom they had beaten a week earlier to clinch the regular season title. East Carolina came into the game motivated and UAB was flat. The Blazers managed to get the game into overtime by hitting three of four free throws in the final 13 seconds. However in overtime, East Carolina went on a 16-5 run and UAB never recovered. The #1 seed lost 75-70 in overtime. Aaron Johnson had a career high and set a CUSA record for scoring when he put 39 points on the board. Jamarr Sanders had 16. The two of them put up 55 of UAB's 70 points. UAB suddenly went from a almost lock for the NCAA tournament to a bubble team.

2016 - And five years later, it happened again. Only this time in Birmingham. The Blazers were the #1 seed having won the regular season by three games. Again, Blazers had racked up post season awards. Robert Brown was First team All Conference. Chris Cokley - second team and William Lee and Nick Norton third team All Conference. William Lee was Defensive Player of the Year. Dirk Williams was 6th Man of the Year and Jarod Haase was Coach of the Year. #1 seed playing inBirmingham, a city they had won 28 straight games. What could possibly go wrong?

Everything. Western Kentucky, the 8th seed had advanced by beating North Texas. UAB was outrebounded 50-28 and shot 39% from the floor. Blazers could not stop Western on defense and trailed by as much as 21 points in the second half. They lost 88-77. Because CUSA was now a much weaker Conference, winning the regular season only got you to the NIT. What had been a fantastic season was ending badly.
03-10-2018 10:45 AM
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