Chris Anderson, Evan Bruinsma to play in men’s National Invitational Tournament

Local Sports Journal

Chris Anderson and Evan Bruinsma will continue their basketball seasons this coming week.

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Chris Anderson

Anderson, from Reeths-Puffer, and Bruinsma, from Western Michigan Christian, both will be heading into the men’s National Invitational Tournament (NIT) with their respective college basketball teams. Anderson plays for Louisiana Tech and Bruinsma for the University of Detroit-Mercy.

The 32-team tournament is in its 76th season. Last year, Stanford won the title. Nine games are scheduled for Tuesday night and seven on Wednesday night.

Anderson and his Louisiana Tech Bulldog teammates missed out on a chance to play in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament after losing early in the Western Athletic Conference tournament. In the first round of the NIT, the Bulldogs (No. 5 seed) travel to Florida State to take on the fourth-seeded Seminoles. That game is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. Tuesday night and will be televised on ESPN3.

Bruinsma, a starting forward the last five games, and his University of Detroit-Mercy Titans (No. 6 seed) will travel to Arizona State (No. 3 seed) for a first-round game at 10 p.m. Wednesday. That game will be televised on ESPNU. Detroit brings in a record of 20-12 while Arizona State is 22-12.

In the first round of the WAC postseason tournament, the Bulldogs (26-6) fell to the University of Texas at San Antonio.

However, the Bulldogs received an automatic bid to the National Invitational Tournament after winning the regular-season title in the WAC. A total of 10 teams received that automatic bid for winning the regular season title, but losing in their conference tournaments.

Anderson, a junior who played junior college basketball at Weatherford College in Texas, started 10 games for the Bulldogs this season. He averaged 14.5 minutes per game, 4.5 points per game and 3.5 rebounds per game.

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Evan Bruinsma

During his two-year career at Weatherford, Anderson (6-foot-6, 220 pounds) averaged more than 14 points in each of the two seasons at the junior college level. He was all-conference in the North Texas Junior College Conference both seasons before transferring to Louisiana Tech.

Bruinsma, a junior, has played in 31 games this season for the Titans. He is averaging 21.6 minutes per game, 5.7 points per game and 4.4 rebounds per game.

After posting a double-double coming off the bench against Valparaiso on Feb. 16, Bruinsma stepped into the Titans’ starting lineup. He has been a starter the last five games. In the game against Valparaiso, Bruinsma had 12 points and 10 rebounds in 22 minutes of action.

U-D received an at-large bid into the tournament.

 

 

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