Siloam Springs, Ark. (March 11, 2005) - For the third consecutive year, the John Brown University men’s basketball team (19-11, 10-8 SAC) will be making a post-season trip to the NAIA Division I National Tournament in Kansas City. JBU finished the past two seasons with back-to-back Sweet 16 finishes in the tournament. The Golden Eagles finished the regular season playing their best basketball of the season winning their last five SAC games and climbing from 6th to 3rd in the final SAC standings. The strong finish earned JBU an all important top 25 ranking in the final NAIA division I poll, finishing ranked no.23 in the nation. JBU lost in the final seconds of the SAC tournament first round game to the eventual tournament champion and host, Oklahoma Baptist University, a team JBU had beaten twice during the regular season. Known as the premier conference of the NAIA, JBU joins five teams from the Sooner Athletic Conference headed to Kansas City next week.
The first round of the tournament will take place on Wednesday and Thursday. John Brown will face 7th ranked Union University (24-8) of Jackson, Tennessee at 8:00 p.m. Thursday evening.
Head coach John Sheehy expressed his thoughts about his team returning for the third consecutive time to the national tournament saying, “Our ultimate goal at the beginning of each season is to represent JBU in the best way possible. The opportunity to represent JBU in this tournament is what we strive for each season, and to be able to do so for the 3rd consecutive year is very exciting. We have players returning this season with tournament experience who hopefully will help us advance even further into the tournament. We led the nation in defensive field goal percentage allowed, which keeps us in most games. If we shoot up to our capability we can play with anybody in the tournament.”