TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A pair of events co-hosted by Tallahassee Community College’s men’s and women’s basketball teams highlight the 2013-14 basketball schedules, released on Thursday.
The first event, the Tallahassee Democrat Thanksgiving Classic, will take place November 26-28. Day one will feature a pair of women’s games while the second and third days will offer quadruple header action, alternating between women’s and men’s contests.
The women’s field will be, arguably, the strongest Tallahassee has ever hosted. NJCAA Region 7 power Walters State (Tenn.) Community College, who advanced to the 2013 NJCAA Tournament, anchors the list of incoming participants, and will be joined by Chattahoochee (Ga.) Technical College, who fell one win shy of advancing to the national tournament out of Region 17, and Gadsden State (Ala.) Community College, who fell in the Region 22 semifinals.
Daytona State College, Jefferson Davis (Ala.) Community College and Southwest Tennessee Community College will join Tallahassee in the men’s field.
The Eagle men and women will also pair up to host the Best Western Holiday Classic on December 30-31 in the final Panhandle Conference tune-up for both teams.
On the men’s side, Tallahassee will close its non-conference schedule with games against a pair of teams who enjoyed tremendous success last season – East Mississippi Community College, who advanced to the NJCAA Tournament for the fourth straight year as the champions of Region 23, and Gadsden State, who upset the Eagles in last year’s season opener and advanced to the title game in Region 22.
PC foe Pensacola State College, Central Georgia Technical College and Hillsborough Community College round out the women’s side of the event.
In all, Tallahassee’s 2013-14 slate features a combined 26 home dates at the Bill Hebrock Eagledome, but, for the first time since 1998, both the men’s and women’s teams will open the season on the road.
Traditionally, Tallahassee plays the role of host on the opening weekend of the season, however, when the Atlantic Coast Conference released its 2013 football schedule, it revealed a home game for Florida State University on Saturday, November 2. And not just any home game – the Seminoles’ bitter rival, Miami, will be in town.
As a result, the Eagle men will head to Niceville, Fla., to participate in Northwest Florida State College’s Quality Inn Classic on November 1-2 against a pair of yet to be determined opponents. Meanwhile, new women’s head coach Franqua Bedell will make his Tallahassee debut in Tampa, Fla., on November 1 when the Lady Eagles tangle with Hillsborough. The next day, Tallahassee will cross the bay for a date against defending Southern Conference Champion St. Petersburg College.
Home openers for both teams will take place the following weekend. The Eagle men will host the TCC Tip-Off Classic on Friday and Saturday, November 8 and 9 with games against Marion (Ala.) Military Institute and Faulkner State (Ala.) Community College. Two days later, on Veteran’s Day, the Lady Eagles will welcome reigning Mid-Florida Conference champ Florida State College at Jacksonville to campus.
With at-large berths to the NJCAA Tournament now available, both teams put together an ambitious schedule.
In fact, 26 of the Lady Eagles’ 30 games will come against teams who advanced to the postseason in 2013, including five whose season ended in Salina, Kan., at the NJCAA Tournament. In addition to Walters State, Tallahassee will face Darton (Ga.) State College (November 8 in Marianna, Fla.) and three games each against a trio of PC rivals who advanced to the national tournament – Gulf Coast State College, Northwest Florida State and Chipola College.
The non-conference schedule also features three games against Florida State College at Jacksonville, Santa Fe College and Hillsborough, as well as a home-and-home against St. Petersburg.
The Lady Eagles will also play in a pair of events that have become a staple to the schedule – the www.GirlsBasketballReport.com Classic (November 8-9, Marianna, Fla.) and the Florida College’s Women’s Basketball Shootout (December 6-7, Gainesville, Fla.) – in addition to a trip to Pensacola, Fla., for the Pensacola State Classic (December 13-14).