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WAC announces schedule for men's and women's basketball tournament in Las Vegas

The Sam Houston men will enter as the fifth seed, while the women are the sixth seed.
Credit: SHSU

HUNTSVILLE, Texas — Coming down to the final game of the regular season, the bracket is finally set for the Hercules Tires WAC Basketball Tournament and NM State will be the top seed for the tournament beginning on Tuesday, March 8 at Michelob ULTRA Arena before shifting to Orleans Arena on Wednesday for the remainder of the tournament.

No stranger to the top seed, NM State takes the number one spot after finishing in a three-way tie for first place with a record of 14-4 in league play. Teddy Allen leads the Aggies with 19.4 points per game and also boasts a team-high 6.9 rebounds per game.

Seattle U earns the second seed after also earning a share of the regular season title with a 14-4 record. The Redhawks are led by 16.8 points per game from Darrion Trammell and 14.7 points per game from Cameron Tyson.

WAC-newcomer Stephen F. Austin was the final third of that three-way tie and will be the third seed in next week’s tournament. Gavin Kensmil is the leading scorer for the ‘Jacks, putting up 16.2 points per game.

Last year’s tournament champion Grand Canyon will be the fourth seed after going 13-5 in WAC play. Jovan Blacksher Jr. is putting up 16.0 points per game for the Lopes while graduate transfer Holland Woods is putting up 14.1 points per game.

Sam Houston will be the fifth seed after finishing the regular season on Thursday with a 13-5 record behind 18.7 points per game from graduate transfer Savion Flagg.

Abilene Christian earns the sixth seed after going 11-7 in WAC play. The Wildcats are led by 12.0 points per game from Coryon Mason and 5.8 rebounds per game. ACU will make their WAC tournament debut on Wednesday night at Orleans Arena, taking on the winner of seventh-seeded Utah Valley and 10th-seed Chicago State.

Utah Valley, who went 10-8 in WAC play, will be led into the postseason by All-American candidate Fardaws Aimaq, who leads the Wolverines with 19.2 points per game and 14.1 rebounds per game.

California Baptist comes to its second WAC tournament after going 7-11 in league play. Four Lancers average in double-digit scoring, led by senior Ty Rowell at 11.9 points per game.

UT Rio Grande Valley earned the ninth seed at 3-15 in WAC play. UTRGV is led by 18.0 points per game from Justin Johnson.

Chicago State earned the final spot with a 3-15 record in league play. Brandon Betson is the leading scorer for the Cougars at 14.2 points per game.

All games can be seen on the ESPN family with preliminary round games on ESPN+ and Saturday's title game going over the air live on ESPNU.

2022 Hercules Tires WAC Men’s Basketball Tournament

Tuesday, March 8 (Michelob ULTRA Arena)

Game One: No. 8 California Baptist vs. No. 9 UT Rio Grande Valley, 6 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Two: No. 7 Utah Valley vs. No. 10 Chicago State, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Wednesday, March 9 (Orleans Arena)

Game Three: No. 5 Sam Houston vs. Winner Game One, 6 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Four: No. 6 Abilene Christian vs. Winner Game Two, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Thursday, March 10 (Orleans Arena

Game Five: No. 4 Grand Canyon vs. Winner Game Three, 6 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Six: No. 3 Stephen F. Austin vs. Winner Game Four, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Friday, March 11 (Orleans Arena)

Game Seven: No. 1 NM State vs. Winner Game Five, 6 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Eight: No. 2 Seattle U vs. Winner Game Six, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Saturday, March 12 (Orleans Arena)

Championship: Game Seven Winner vs. Game Eight Winner, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)

The bracket for the 2022 WAC Women’s Basketball tournament is set, with conference newcomer Stephen F. Austin earning the top seed for the 10-team, nine-game event.

The tournament begins in Las Vegas on Tuesday, March 8 at the Michelob ULTRA Arena before shifting to the Orleans Arena the next day for the remainder of the tournament. All games will be on ESPN+ and will be available for international viewers on the WAC Digital Network.

The Ladyjacks secured the league’s regular season title and a bye into the semifinal round on Friday by finishing with a 17-1 conference record. Stephen F. Austin’s offense has been paced this season by Aiyana Johnson (14.6 points per game) and Stephanie Visscher (14.3).

Grand Canyon will be the second seed after they completed their WAC season with a 14-4 record. The Lopes will not play until the semifinal round and are led by Amara Graham’s 12.2 points per game scoring output.

Defending WAC regular season and tournament champion California Baptist enters the tournament as the No. 3 seed with a 13-5 conference record. They will start the tournament on Thursday in the quarterfinal round. Last season’s WAC tournament MVP Caitlyn Harper is scoring a team best 18.3 points per game heading into the postseason. Also earning a spot directly into the quarterfinal round is fourth seed Utah Valley. Josie Williams has averaged a double-double all season in helping the Wolverines to a 10-8 conference mark.

The final byes of the tournament go to No. 5 seed Abilene Christian and No. 6 seed Sam Houston. They will begin their postseason on Wednesday afternoon.

The opening round match-ups on Tuesday will pit No. 8 seed UT Rio Grande Valley against No. 9 seed Seattle U and seventh seed Lamar against 10th seed NM State.

2022 WAC Women’s Basketball Tournament Schedule

Tuesday, March 8

(Michelob ULTRA Arena)

Game One: No. 8 UTRGV vs. No. 9 Seattle U, 12 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Two: No. 7 Lamar vs. No. 10 NM State, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Wednesday, March 9

(Orleans Arena)

Game Three: Winner of Game 1 vs. No. 5 Abilene Christian, 12 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Four: Winner of Game 2 vs. No. 6 Sam Houston, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Thursday, March 10

(Orleans Arena)

Game Five: Winner of Game 3 vs. No. 4 Utah Valley, 12 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Six: Winner of Game 4 vs. No. 3 California Baptist, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Friday, March 11

(Orleans Arena)

Game Seven: Winner of Game 5 vs. No. 1 Stephen F. Austin, 12 p.m. (ESPN+)

Game Eight: Winner of Game 6 vs. No. 2 Grand Canyon, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN+)

Saturday, March 12

(Orleans Arena)

Championship Game: Game Seven Winner vs. Game Eight Winner, 2 p.m. (ESPN+)

All Times Are Local to Las Vegas (Pacific Standard Time)



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