Atlantic Sun Tournament 2012: Belmont Earns NCAA Tournament Bid

The Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament will begin on Wednesday, February 29 and will be played at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia.

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Atlantic Sun Tournament 2012: Belmont Defeats Florida Gulf Coast To Earn NCAA Tournament Bid

The Belmont Bruins defeated the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles 83-69 in the Atlantic Sun Tournament final and in the process earned their fifth ever NCAA tournament bid. Belmont struggled in the first half against Florida Gulf Coast and trailed 42-39 at the break.

In the second half Belmont made their move which included a 19-6 run to put away Florida Gulf Coast for good. That run ended the tournament run by No. 6 seeded Florida Gulf Coast. Belmont never allowed Florida Gulf Coast to get back in the game once they had their double-digit lead.

Both teams shot nearly identical from the field, but the free throw disparity was the difference in the game. Belmont went 21-of-25 while Florida Gulf Coast went only 9-of-16.

Belmont's had five players score in double figure with guard Ian Clark leading the way with 16 points and Kerron Johnson had a double-double with 14 points, 11 rebounds and also five assists.

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Atlantic Sun Tournament 2012: Florida Gulf Coast Vs. Belmont Face Off For NCAA Tournament Bid

The Belmont Bruins and the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles will face off on Saturday night at 7:00 PM in the final round of the 2012 Atlantic Sun Basketball Championships.

Belmont got to the finals after defeating East Tennessee State 69-61 on Friday in the Atlantic Sun semifinals. Bruins' guard Ian Clark scored a game-high 19 points as the team shot 58% from the field. Florida Gulf Coast pulled off an upset in their matchup versus the No. 2 seed Mercer Bears as Sherwood Brown's 14 points pushed the Eagles to a 62-58 win.

This matchup between the No. 6 seed Eagles and the No. 1 seed Bruins will be the tenth in the two schools history. Belmont holds a 7-2 series lead, including two victories this season.

MATCHUP TIME (ET)
Florida Gulf Coast vs Belmont 7:00 PM

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Atlantic Sun Tournament 2012 Day Three Schedule And Bracket: East Tennessee State Takes On Belmont, Florida Gulf Coast To Face Mercer

The top-seeded Atlantic Sun team Belmont and No. 4 East Tennessee State face off on Friday in the league's semifinal round. Mercer and Florida Gulf Coast matchup following the Belmont/East Tennessee State game.

East Tennessee State advanced after defeating North Florida, 68-66 in the quarterfinal round on Thursday night. In that game Isaiah Brown led the way with 22 points. East Tennessee State was coming off a loss in its final regular season game at the hands of Florida Gulf Coast.

Now the Buccaneers have a chance at upsetting Belmont, a team which defeated them twice this season with both games resulting in double-digit margins.

Kerron Johnson is leading Belmont in scoring, averaging 14.1 points a game. Ian Clark adds 12.1 points a game, while Drew Hanlen and Scott Saunders contribute 11.1 and 10.3, respectively.

Florida Gulf Coast is in the semifinal round after an upset over No.3 seed USC Upstate.

#4 ETSU vs #1 Belmont University Center 6:00 p.m.
#6 FGCU vs #2 Mercer University Center 8:30 p.m.
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2012 Atlantic Sun Tournament: East Tennessee State Advances, Florida Gulf Coast Pulls Upset

The semifinals of the 2012 Atlantic Sun basketball tournament are set after Thursday's action in which East Tennessee State defeated North Florida 68-66 and Florida Gulf Coast pulled off an upset victory over USC Upstate 71-58.

Isiah Brown scored 22 points to lead the Buccaneers into the semifinals where they will take on Belmont on Friday night. Parker Smith led North Florida with 17 points in the loss.

In the nightcap, Florida Gulf Coast used a big second half to stun the No. 3 seed USC Upstate. Christophe Varidel led five Florida Gulf Coast players in double figures with 14 points. Adrian Rogers led the Spartains with 16 points. Florida Gulf Coast advances to the semifinals where they will take on Mercer on Friday.

Here is a look at the updated bracket and the remaining schedule:

Semifinal Round
FRIDAY, MARCH 02, 2012
#4 ETSU vs #1 Belmont University Center 6:00 p.m.
#6 FGCU vs #2 Mercer University Center 8:30 p.m.
Championship
SATURDAY, MARCH 03, 2012
Semifinal 1 Winner vs Semifinal 2 Winner University Center
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2012 Atlantic Sun Tournament: Belmont, Mercer Advance To Semis

The 2012 Atlantic Sun Tournament got underway on Wednesday with the top two seeds both advancing to the semifinals. In the first game of the day, top seeded Belmont defeated Jacksonville by a score of 76-62. In the night cap, No. 2 seed Mercer knocked off Lipscomb 61-53.

Kerron Johnson scored 19 points to pace Belmont over Jacksonville. The Bruins used an 18-3 run in the first half to take control of the game and cruised to their 12th consecutive win. Jacksonville was led by Aloys Cabell's 17 points. Belmont will take on the winner of the East Tennessee State/North Florida matchup on Friday.

Mercer's Jakob Gollon scored 19 points and Langston Hall added 11 points to help the Bears advance. The Bears entered the half tied with Lipscomb but managed to pull away in the second half. The Bisons were led by Zavion Williams 17 points. Mercer will take on either USC Upstate or Florida Gulf Coast University on Friday.

Here is a look at the updated bracket:

THURSDAY, MARCH 01, 2012
#5 North Florida vs #4 ETSU University Center 2:30 p.m.
#6 FGCU vs #3 USC Upstate University Center 8:30 p.m.
Semifinal Round
FRIDAY, MARCH 02, 2012
No. 4/5 Seed vs #1 Belmont University Center 6:00 p.m.
No. 3/6 Seed vs #2 Mercer University Center 8:30 p.m.
Championship
SATURDAY, MARCH 03, 2012
Semifinal 1 Winner vs Semifinal 2 Winner University Center 7:00 p.m.
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Atlantic Sun Tournament 2012: Schedule And Bracket Released

The Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament will begin on Wednesday, February 29 and will be played at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia.

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