Road Trip Continues in Carrollton

Arkansas Tech University will continue its tour of the Gulf South Conference East Division tonight (Monday, Nov. 29) when it visits the University of West Georgia for a basketball doubleheader.

The nationally top-ranked Arkansas Tech Golden Suns (4-1) will face the West Georgia women (1-4) at 4:30 p.m. CST, while the nationally 22nd-ranked Arkansas Tech Wonder Boys (4-1) will take on the West Georgia men (2-2) at 6:30 p.m. CST.

Both games will be played at The Coliseum in Carrollton, Ga., and both will be broadcast in the Arkansas River Valley by radio station KWKK 100.9 FM.

Click here to access an Internet stream of the broadcast.

The first leg of Arkansas Tech’s road trip resulted in a split decision at West Alabama on Saturday.

The Golden Suns dropped an 85-73 decision to the West Alabama women, but the Wonder Boys overcame a 15-point second half deficit to top the UWA men 61-58.

Tech women’s basketball head coach Dave Wilbers attributed his team’s upset loss to its defense.

“We didn’t play very good defense the entire game,” said Wilbers. “We were never able to get two or three stops in a row and we weren’t able to control their guards. But credit UWA, they made shots and plays.”

West Alabama’s women shot 49 percent from the field. It was the highest field goal percentage allowed by the Golden Suns against a non-conference opponent since Dec. 28, 2006, when Florida Gulf Coast made 52 percent of its field goal tries against Tech’s women.

The loss marked the Golden Suns’ first regular season defeat against a GSC East member since a 64-44 setback at West Florida on Dec. 29, 2003.

Tech’s women, who are 34-5 all-time versus the Gulf South East Division, will try to start a new winning streak against the GSC East tonight.

West Georgia will carry a four-game losing streak into the contest. The Wolves suffered a 66-46 loss to Harding University on Saturday.

UWG’s women are under the direction of first-year head coach Scott Groninger, who was previously the head coach at Christian Brothers University. Groninger led CBU to wins over the Golden Suns in both of the last two seasons.

The Wonder Boys’ comeback after trailing by 15 points at West Alabama on Saturday was the largest deficit they have overcome to win a game since Jan. 6, 2003, when they rallied from 16 points down to defeat Arkansas-Monticello 96-91 in double overtime.

Arkansas Tech held UWA without a made field goal over the final 6:52 on its way to victory.

That defensive effort, a career-high 24 points from Willie Sanders and some clutch baskets down the stretch from Johnie Davis were enough to allow the Wonder Boys to overcome a poor shooting night.

Tech was just 17-of-57 (30 percent) from the field in its first road victory of the season.

“Our team showed a lot of toughness tonight,” said Tech men’s basketball head coach Doug Karleskint after the win. “We decided to really guard them over the final 10-12 minutes of the game and that was the difference.”

West Georgia’s men were tagged with a 79-65 loss against Harding on Saturday. Both of the Wolves’ defeats this year have come at the hands of GSC West members. Christian Brothers beat UWG’s men 66-59 on Nov. 15.

After tonight’s games, both Arkansas Tech teams will prepare for home contests this weekend. The Wonder Boys will entertain Southwestern Christian at 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 3. The Golden Suns will host St. Edward’s at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 4.