The APSU Governors men’s basketball team have shocked the Ohio Valley Conference, APSU, themselves and their fans by being the first No. 8 seed to ever make an OVC Championship appearance and win it.
After multiple comebacks in the four-game tournament run, the Govs have been named the No. 16 NCAA seed, and will face the No. 1 seeded Kansas in the NCAA March Madness tournament.
The Govs had two last minute wins against Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville to take the last spot in the tourney.
The Govs took home a 92-72 victory over Tennessee Technological University in round one of the OVC tourney. All-OVC senior forward/center Chris Horton had a career high 37 points and 21 rebounds.
Head Men’s Basketball Coach Dave Loos’ granddaughter, Rhyan Loos, successfully had a cancerous tumor removed the same day.
The Govs faced Tennessee State University in round two.
The Govs rallied after a 19-point deficit in the second half to take the game to 74-72 at the last second on a missed free throw. Sophomore Josh Robinson led the team with 17 points, followed by Horton with 15 points and freshman Jared Savage with 13 points.
The next stop for the Govs was Belmont. This nail biter went into overtime, but the Govs overcame the Bruins 97-96.
Savage lived up to his name when he scored 21 points on seven 3-pointers. Horton led the Govs with 30 points and 11 rebounds. Robinson was just behind Horton with 25 points.
The last stop was the OVC Championship against the University of Tennessee at Martin. Unlike the Govs’ last two games, this one never felt out of reach.
On coach Loos’ 69th birthday, the Govs took home the OVC tourney win and a bid to the NCAA Tournament after overcoming the Skyhawks 83-73.
During the first half, Horton sustained a leg injury and was escorted to the locker room to be checked out. However, he returned in the second half to help the Govs snatch the win.
Savage led the Govs with 24 points on eight 3-pointers, shooting one shy of the school record.
Horton said his injury will not keep him out of the NCAA tournament.
“I’m taking everything day by day,” Horton said. “Whenever we play I’ll be ready.”
The No. 16 seed Govs return to action in Des Moines, Iowa on Thursday, March 17, to play the No. 1 seed Kansas.