The Phoenix lost their last six games overall to finish in a three-way tie for fifth in the Mid-South standings along with the University of the Cumberlands and Georgetown College. Losses to the Cumberlands and Georgetown in the last week caused the three-way tie and Cumberland lost all of the tiebreakers, ending as the No. 7 seed to take on the second-seeded Blue Raiders, who lost the tiebreaker for the No. 1 seed to Shawnee State.
The Phoenix lost both games to Lindsey Wilson during the regular season, 76-64 at home in January and 66-58 in Columbia three weeks ago. The second game was tied with 3:53 to play before Cumberland went scoreless until the final five seconds.
Lindsey Wilson defeated CU, 61-52, in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament last season. The only other meeting between the two clubs in the MSC Championships also took place in the quarterfinals, with Cumberland posting a 61-56 victory in 2013 on its way to the tournament championship.
Phoenix men seeded sixth, set to face Pikeville
Cumberland is set to face 14th-ranked Pikeville in the quarterfinals of the Mid-South Conference Men’s Basketball Championships on Friday at 7 p.m. CST, as announced late Saturday by the league office.
The Phoenix lost an 84-59 decision to the Bears at home in January and then dropped an 83-78 decision in overtime at Pikeville on Feb. 16. Cumberland led by 13 points with eight minutes to go before the Bears put together a final flurry to get the game to the extra period.
Cumberland finished the regular season 12-14 overall, 5-9 in league play, to earn the No. 6 seed in the tournament. Pikeville tied Georgetown College for second in the regular season standings but lost both games to the Tigers this year and are the No.3 seed in the field. The two teams have never met in the Mid-South Conference Championships.