Courtesy Coker College:
HARTSVILLE, S.C. â?? A December 21 match-up against the University of South Carolina highlights the 2014-15 Coker College men's basketball schedule released this week.
The game, South Carolina's only regular season game against a Division II opponent this year, will be the first-ever meeting between the Cobras and the Gamecocks.
"We are extremely excited to play a high-level school like South Carolina," said head coach Dan Schmotzer. "The kids really enjoy playing games like this. It's also great for our alumni base around the state to be able to get together for the game."
The Gamecocks finished the 2013-14 season with a record of 14-20 overall, going 5-13 in the highly competitive SEC Conference. Led by third-year head coach Frank Martin, the Gamecocks return SEC All-Freshman selection Sindarius Thornwell (13.4 ppg) and Tyrone Johnson (11.2 ppg).
In addition to the game against South Carolina, the Cobras will also take on another Division I opponent, Campbell University, in an exhibition on Nov. 8. Tip-off for the South Carolina game will be at 3:30 p.m. at Colonial Life Arena, while the Cobras and the Camels will take the floor at 7 p.m. at Campbell's Gore Arena.
Coker will take on North Greenville University, Erskine College, Benedict College and UNC Pembroke in this season's other non-conference games.
The Cobras will begin the season by hosting the SAC/Conference Carolinas Challenge at Coker's new state-of-the-art, 1,908-seat Harris E. and Louise H. DeLoach Center on Nov. 14-15. They will take on North Greenville on Nov. 14 and Erskine on Nov. 15. Both games will tip-off at 8 p.m. The Cobras will then play host to Newberry College on Nov. 19 in their South Atlantic Conference (SAC) opener at 8 p.m.
Last season, the Cobras were 15-13 overall and 11-11 in the SAC, advancing to the semifinals of the SAC Men's Basketball Tournament. Three of Coker's top five scorers return this season; seniors Errick Bethel (12.1 ppg), Larry Felder(11.7 ppg) and junior Trey Marshall (10.1).
"It is going to be a very exciting year for us," added Schmotzer. "We are ready to get back on the floor and get to work."
In addition to their non-conference contests, the Cobras will play 22 South Atlantic Conference match-ups, including games against last season's NCAA Southeast Regional participants Anderson, Carson-Newman and Lincoln Memorial.