Southwest Tennessee Community College

January 30, 2006

For More Information, Contact: Keith Gentry (901) 333-4114/ (901) 619-1899 / Kimberly Kreider (901) 333-4023

Release written by Keith Gentry

For the first time in 22 years, the Tennessee Junior and Community College Athletic Association (TJCCAA)/National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region VII Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments are coming to Memphis! Twelve men’s and twelve women’s basketball teams will convene at the newly renovated Verties Sails Gymnasium March 7-12 with Southwest Tennessee Community College serving as the host school for the 2006 tournament. This year’s tournament will be the 38th annual event for the men and 31st for the women.

”We’re elated to be hosting the tournament,” said Southwest Athletic Director Verties Sails Jr. “Everybody at the school is working extremely hard to make sure visitors are as comfortable as possible. We’d like our school and the community to give us support as we showcase Southwest and the great city of Memphis.”

The top four regular season finishers will receive first round byes with the first round winners advancing to the quarterfinals. Pairings for first round games will be (seed) 5 vs. (seed) 12, 6 vs. 11, 7 vs. 10, and 8 vs. 9. First round men’s games are scheduled for Tuesday, March 7 with quarterfinal games on Thursday, March 9. Women’s first round games will be on Wednesday, March 8 with quarterfinals on Friday, March 10. Men’s and women’s semifinal games will be played on Saturday, March 11. Times for games played Tuesday, March 7 through Saturday, March 11 will be 2, 4, 6, and 8 p.m. with championship games scheduled to tip-off at 2 and 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 12.

Tournament champions will represent the TJCCAA and Region VII in the NJCAA National Tournament March 21-25. The men’s national tournament will be held in Hutchinson, Kansas while Salina, Kansas is the site for the women’s tourney.

In addition to Southwest, the tournaments will feature Chattanooga State Technical and Community College, Cleveland State Community College, Columbia State Community College, Dyersburg State Community College, Hiwassee College, Jackson State Community College, Motlow State Community College, Roane State Community College, Saint Catharine College, Volunteer State Community College and Walters State Community College.

Southwest has won eleven TJCCAA/Region VII men’s championships and seven TJCCAA/Region VII women’s titles, the most of any TJCCAA institution. In second place with eleven total championships are Walters State (4 men, 7 women) and Hiwassee (7 men, 4 women), followed by Columbia State (3 men, 3 women), Cleveland State (1 men, 3 women), and Motlow State (3 men), Roane State (3 women), Jackson State (2 women), and Chattanooga State (1 women). Former conference members Cumberland University (4 men), Aquinas College (3 men), and Martin Methodist College (1 men) also won championships. The Southwest men’s basketball team last won the TJCCAA/Region VII Tournament in 2003, while the Lady Saluqis were tournament champions in 2001.

Both Southwest teams are also among the tournament favorites this season. The 13th-ranked Southwest men, coached by 27th-year Head Coach Verties Sails Jr., are currently 17-3 overall and in first place in the TJCCAA with a 14-2 record. The Lady Saluqis (13-7 overall and 10-6 in the TJCCAA), under the direction of 10th year Head Coach Andrea Martre, have won nine of their last ten games and are vying for a first round bye as well.