Basketball Ends in NCAA

Rams and Rambelles finish record breaking season

By Sam Fowler
On March 24, 2016

   Ram and Rambelle basketball both competed in the NCAA tournament in the same season for the first time in school history.
   The No. 4 Belles kicked off  March Madness on March 10 with their ninth tournament appearance, defeating No. 5 Colorado School of Mines 71-61 in Lubbock.However, the fever for the Belles was short-lived as they dropped their second round game on March 11 to No. 1 Lubbock Christian University 101-72.
    Belles and first year Head Coach Kevin Baker have a tremendous amount to be proud of from their 24-8 turnaround in the 2015-16 season.“It’s an amazing accomplishment to make it here in year one,” Baker said. “We’ve been tough and resilient. The team really bought in.”Junior guard Lexi Murphy felt no uncertainty with her new coach.“We expected to be here,” Murphy said.
    Belle seniors Diamalises Rivera, post, and Brea Mitchell, guard, finished their last season for the Belles with a bang. 
In Wichita Falls, the Rams picked up where the Belles left off in the NCAA tournament en route to a second consecutive ‘Sweet Sixteen’ appearance.
   The Rams defeated Arkansas-Fort Smith 92-85, and Fort Lewis College 87-66 on March 12-13. However, the title hopes were cut short for the Rams. They fell 77-72 to Tarleton State on March 15.First year Head Coach Cinco Boone said he was expecting tough games at the regional tournament in this season.“It’s humbling,” Boone said. “It was a great experience and I’m proud of [the team].”
   Senior forward Omari Gudul wrapped up his ASU career in the tournament.“These have been great guys to be around,” Gudul said. “It’s been really fun.”
Gudul was not the only one saying goodbye to the blue and gold for the Rams, as senior transfers Stedman Allen and Tre Bennett played their last games for ASU.“This was a first for me,” Bennett said. “I’ve played at the junior college and division one levels and never went to a national tournament. To be here my senior year is something special.”
   The Rams and Belles were the third and fourth teams to make it to the NCAA tournament for ASU this year, after volleyball and soccer made appearances in the fall.


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