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Golden Eagles return to Nashville for OVC rematch vs. Belmont


COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – For the second straight game, the Tennessee Tech men's basketball team will get a second chance against a squad from Nashville. The Golden Eagles take on the Belmont Bruins Saturday evening in a 7 p.m. CST tilt with nothing but a win on their minds.

In their first meeting since 1998-99, the Bruins and Golden Eagles certainly weren't expecting what would evetnually unfold. Despite owning an 11-0 all-time series lead, Tech fell hard to the potent offense of Belmont, 83-52 in the Eblen Center on Jan. 5.

Ohio Valley Conference Player of th Year candidate and four-time OVC Player of Week Ian Clark led a Belmont squad in a masterful display of shooting. The Bruins shot just over 56 percent in the contest including an unrelenting 13-of-25 from behind the 3-point arc.

Clark and JJ Mann torched the nets, combining for 10 made 3-pointers and 40 points. Kerron Johnson, one of the top point guards in the league, dished out 10 assists and just missed out on a double-double, scoring eight points.

Senior guard Jud Dillard led Tech, recording one of his seven double-doubles of the season with 21 points and 13 rebounds. Both numbers led all players. Dennis Ogbe, who was recently named CoSIDA Academic All-District first-team, chipped in 11 points as well.

The Golden Eagles quickly found out in the last meeting that this isn't your daddy's Belmont team. Since joining the Ohio Valley Conference this season, the Bruins have left their mark all over the league, going an undefeated 9-0 in conference play while averaging 84 points per game during that run.

The Golden Eagles will need to play with the same defensive intensity that limited Murray State (the 2nd ranked scoring team in the OVC) and Austin Peay (5th in scoring in the OVC) both to season-lows in points recently. Tech will also look to experienced players on the offensive side of the ball to provide some consistency throughout the contest.

Senior guard Jud Dillard, ranked second in the league in scoring with 19.5 points per game, will look to control the game both with his shooting and his ability to rebound the ball. He pulls down 7.7 per game, good for fifth in the OVC.

A native of Munich, Germany, Ogbe will look to build off his first career double-double and continue his hot streak of scoring in double figures in six of his last seven games. He also rebounds the ball well, pulling down 5.5 per contest

Fans can tune in to 106.1 The Eagle to listen to live coverage of Tech's contest against the Bruins on Saturday. Radio coverage will begin 15 minutes prior to the 7 p.m. CST tip-off time. Fans can also view the live game feed on the OVC Digital Network, the Ohio Valley Conference's live webstream for free here.

To read more about the upcoming game and Tennessee Tech basketball, take a look at the game notes for the match-up against Belmont here.