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Muhlenberg College

Monday, February 22, 2010

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Centennial playoff hoops schedules set

women’s basketball
men’s basketball
Wednesday, February 24
(5) Dickinson (16-8) at (4) Johns Hopkins (15-9), 7:00

Saturday, February 27 at Muhlenberg
(1) Muhlenberg (20-4) vs. Dickinson or Johns Hopkins, 2:00

(3) McDaniel (18-6) vs. (2) Gettysburg (22-3),
not before 4:00

Sunday, February 28 at Muhlenberg
championship game, 2:00
Wednesday, February 24
(5) Muhlenberg (12-13) at (4) Ursinus (15-10), 7:30

Saturday, February 27 at Franklin & Marshall
(3) Washington (13-9) vs. (2) Gettysburg (14-10), 1:00

(1) Franklin & Marshall (21-4) vs. Muhlenberg or Ursinus,
not before 3:00

Sunday, February 28 at Franklin & Marshall
championship game, 3:00

For the 13th time in the 17 years of the league’s existence, both Muhlenberg basketball teams qualified for the Centennial Conference playoffs.

The women are the top seed and will host the CC semifinals and final this weekend at Memorial Hall. The men are the fifth seed and will open up on the road at Ursinus on Wednesday in a rematch of Saturday’s regular-season finale.

Muhlenberg is trying to sweep the CC basketball titles for the first time since 1998. The only other school to accomplish that feat was Johns Hopkins in 1999.

The women are also eying some history on their own. The Mules, who have won a CC-high five championships in women’s basketball, can become the first CC team – men or women – to win three titles in a row and four in a five-year span.

In contrast to last season, when Muhlenberg won the regular-season title by seven games, the 2010 race for the top seed was a three-way battle between the Mules, Gettysburg and McDaniel. Muhlenberg tied Gettysburg for first place with a 17-3 record, with McDaniel a game back.

The Mules earned the right to host due to McDaniel’s sweep of Gettysburg. The Green Terror will try to make it 3-for-3 against the Bullets when the two teams meet in one semifinal. Muhlenberg awaits the winner of Wednesday’s first-round game between Dickinson and Johns Hopkins.

Since the CC went to one division in 2004, the top seed has emerged as the champion only twice – but it was Muhlenberg both times, in 2006 and 2009. The Mules won their 2008 title at Franklin & Marshall.

Muhlenberg has a 13-10 all-time record in CC playoff games, including a 10-3 mark at home.

The men face an uphill climb in their quest for their third CC title, and their first since 1998. They would have to win three games in five days, all away from home – something that has never been done in CC playoff history.

If Muhlenberg can get past Ursinus, it will have to tangle with nationally ranked Franklin & Marshall. Those two teams are tied for the CC lead with four championships apiece. Defending champion Gettysburg faces Washington, which is seeking its first title, in the other semifinal.

The Mules have a 6-10 all-time record in CC playoff games. Last year, they defeated Haverford in the first round for their first postseason win since 2001 before falling to F&M in the semis.

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