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MARTIN, Tenn. - The University of Tennessee at Martin men’s basketball squad opens the home portion of its 2016-17 schedule with a nonconference tilt against the UT Rio Grande Valley Vaqueros out of the Western Athletic Conference. The game will take place on Sunday, Nov. 13 with a 2 p.m. tipoff time at the Kathleen and Tom Elam Center.
The Skyhawks (0-1) will go for their second win over UT Rio Grande Valley in as many seasons, as UT Martin claimed a 72-64 road win in Edinburg last season. The Skyhawks led for over 34 minutes of clock time but found themselves down by one point with 6:20 to play. UT Martin then held the Vaqueros scoreless for a span of 4:25 as part of a game-ending 14-5 run. Jacolby Mobley accumulated 15 points on 7-of-11 shooting to help guide the Skyhawks.
UT Martin is coming off a valiant effort in its season opener, a slim 86-83 setback at Southeastern Conference member Ole Miss. The Skyhawks held a 42-39 halftime advantage and trailed by just one possession with 49 seconds to go but could not convert on four chances to win in regulation or send the contest into overtime. Matthew Butler drilled seven 3-pointers on his way to a game-high 25 points for UT Martin, who also saw Mobley (17) and Kedar Edwards (13 points, seven rebounds, five assists) score in double-figures.
This game marks the season opener for UT Rio Grande Valley, formerly known as UT Pan American. The Vaqueros return four players and two starters from last year’s squad, including Preseason All-WAC performers Antonio Green (11.6 points per game as a freshman) and Dan Kimasa (10.0 points, team-high 6.6 rebounds per game).
UT Rio Grande Valley displayed an explosive offense in its exhibition tuneup, defeating UT Tyler by a 101-75 margin. Green converted 10 three-pointers (in 14 attempts) on his way to a game-high 36 points. The Vaquero defense also forced 28 turnovers against the NCAA Division-III opponent.
Fans can watch the game live, free of charge, on the OVC Digital Network. That link - as well as radio links for Star 95.1 FM and WUTM 90.3 FM - can be found in addition to live stats access at the top of the webpage.