LIU-Brooklyn Is Ready And Set To Open NCAA Tournament With Play-In Game With Radford
The LIU-Brooklyn men’s basketball team will travel to Dayton, Ohio this week, to face fellow No. 16 seed Radford as one of the First Four games in the 2018 NCAA Tournament. The two teams will face off in the first game of the bracket, Tuesday, March 13 at 6:40 p.m. EST, which will be broadcast live on TruTV.
The winner of the LIU-Brooklyn/ Radford matchup will face No. 1 juggernaut Villanova in Pittsburgh on Thursday, March 15.
The Radford Highlanders received an automatic invitation to the NCAA tournament by winning the Big South playoffs with a 55-52 decision versus the Liberty Flames to bring their overall record to 22-12. Radford finished second in the conference at 12-6 and are on a seven-game winning streak.
The Blackbirds punched their ticket to the NCAA Tournament by earning the Northeast Conference’s automatic bid Tuesday. LIU upset top-seeded Wagner, 71-61 in the NEC championship to win their sixth overall title, and first since 2013.
LIU-Brooklyn has plenty of firepower with Joel Hernandez leading the way with 20.1 points and 5.9 boards followed by Raiquan Clark with a 17.4 point average and 7.1 rebounds. Jasquan Agosto and Julian Batts combined for nearly 22 points and eight boards so this offense had options.
At the Blackbird’s NCAA Selection viewing party, the team was loose and celebrating the moment but fully aware of the challenges that are head.
LIU-Brooklyn is embracing its long-shot Cinderella story. The Blackbirds (18-16, 10-8 NEC) enter the tournament with the second-most losses of any team — Texas Southern is 15-19.
“I want to pretty much put us on the map,” Hernandez said Sunday night. “I feel like not a lot of people in America know about us. I pretty much want to shock everyone and show them that we’re a good team, we can compete with any of the best teams out there.”
Tuesday night we will find out what exactly are the Blackbirds made of.