PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- The Providence College men's basketball team will make its first appearance in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) since 2009 when the No. 4 seed Friars host the No. 5 seed UNC Charlotte 49ers on Wednesday, March 20 at 7:15 p.m. on ESPN3 at the Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence. The winner of the Providence/UNC Charlotte game will face the winner of the Kentucky/Robert Morris game on March 21-25.
Fans can purchase tickets starting tonight (Sunday, March 17) at 10 p.m. online at www.friars.com. Fans are encouraged to purchase tickets online and choose our print at home option to avoid delays. Fans interested in purchasing tickets also can call or visit the Providence College ticket office at 401-865-GO PC starting Monday morning (March 18) at 8:30 a.m. Fans also can purchase tickets at the Dunkin' Donuts Center Box Office starting on Tuesday. The cost of the tickets are $10 for upper arena and $15 for lower arena seating. For inquiries about group sales, please call Erin Dunn at 401-865-1983.
The Friars, who finished the regular season in eighth place in the BIG EAST with a 9-9 mark, have registered a 17-14 record overall.
Providence will be making its 19th appearance in the NIT. The Friars, who won the NIT in 1961 and 1963, have registered a 30-19 mark all-time in NIT games. In the Friars' most recent NIT game, Providence was defeated by Miami, 78-66, in the First Round on March 18, 2009.
Wednesday's game will mark the second meeting all-time between Providence and UNC Charlotte. In the first meeting, the Friars defeated the 49ers, 67-62, on November 28, 2008 in the 76 Classic in Anaheim, Calif.
The 49ers finished the season with a 21-11 record. Charlotte placed ninth in the Atlantic 10 Conference with an 8-8 mark. They won their opening game in the A-10 Tournament with a 68-63 victory over Richmond on March 14. In their most recent game, they were defeated by St. Louis, 72-55, in the A-10 Quarterfinals on March 15. The 49ers are making their 18th postseason tournament appearance and first since reaching the NIT in 2008.
INFO ON CHARLOTTE
Chris Braswell, who recorded a double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds off the bench against #16 Saint Louis in the A-10 Tournament quarterfinals, averages a team-leading 11.9 points per game. Braswell is tied for second on the team in rebounding at 5.5 boards per game. Braswell grabbed 15 rebounds in the Atlantic 10 Tournament to move past Norris Dae (1968-72) into fifth place on the 49ers all-time rebounds list with 863 career rebounds. Pierria Henry, who has recorded three double-doubles in the last four games, averages 10.4 points per game. Henry is tied with Braswell for second on the team in rebounding. Henry leads the team in assists with 118 and steals with 84. Henry ranks among the nation's leaders in steals. Willie Clayton, who scored a season-high 18 points against Richmond in the A-10 Tournament, averages 8.4 points per game. Clayton leads the team in rebounding at 6.3 boards per game. Terrence Williams averages 7.5 points per game. Williams has started 23 games this season.
Darion Clark averages 6.2 points per game and 4.6 boards per game. Clark has started 18 games this season. Denzel Ingram, who has started 27 of the last 29 games, averages 5.9 points per game. E. Victor Nickerson, who has tallied five double-figure scoring games this season, averages 5.5 points per game. Ivan Benkovic has knocked down 10 three-point field goals in the last five games. Mike Thorne scored 10 points and grabbed seven rebounds off the bench against Temple, February 24. Colby Lewis enjoyed one of the 49ers signature moments of the season with a three-point field goal at the buzzer on Senior Night against Saint Joseph's, March 9. He also knocked down a three against Saint Louis in the A-10 Tournament.
This game will mark the second meeting between Charlotte and Providence. The 49ers lost to Providence, 67-62, in the 76 Classic in Anaheim, California, November 28, 2008.