The 51st OVC Men’s Basketball Tournament has concluded at the Municipal Auditorium in Downtown Nashville. Fans from all over the Ohio Valley Conference descended upon Nashville for this great event that comes to Nashville every March. They were treated to great basketball and an abundance of activities to partake in around the city.
On the floor, the 1st round games on Wednesday night held to form with Tennessee Tech and Southeast Missouri winning those games as the #5 and #6 seeds respectively. Tennessee Tech run came to end on Thursday at the hands of Morehead State, who put together one of their best offensive and defensive efforts of the season to take down the Golden Eagles and advance to play the Belmont in the semifinals. In Thursday’s late game, Eastern Kentucky played solidly on both sides of the floor in systemically breaking down Southeast Missouri’s schemes to set up a semifinal matchup with their cross-state rival Murray State.
The energy was electric in the Municipal Auditorium for semifinals night. The 1st semifinal between Belmont and Morehead State was battle of contrasting styles with the athleticism and quickness of Morehead State going against the efficient and effectiveness of Belmont. Morehead State couldn’t duplicate the game they played the night prior, just scuffling all night and could not get anything going while Belmont was on their game making 3’s, executing at a high level and making teams uncomfortable by doing what they do. The 2nd semifinal was a game of runs where Murray State was constantly chasing Eastern Kentucky. Every time Murray State punched Eastern Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky punched right back and quelled all the Racers momentum. With all that being said, the Racers continued to fight, had a chance to tie the game with a 3 at the buzzer and just missed that shot long, sending the Eastern Kentucky Colonels to the OVC Tournament Championship game against Belmont.
The Championship Game started off wonderfully for the Colonels jumping out to a 12-0 lead on the Belmont Bruins early in the 1st half, and at the 1st media timeout had them down 14-2. The Colonels continued that solid play to a halftime lead of 36-28 over the Bruins. The Bruins came out with a lot of energy in the 2nd half, scrapping and clawing to get back in the game. They eventually succeeded tying the game at 52-52 late in the 2nd half. The Colonels remained steady withstanding the Bruins comeback to win the 2014 OVC Men’s Basketball Tournament 79-73 to gain a berth in the 2014 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.
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