OC basketball schedule features games against 3 local foes

Senior point guard Kendre Talley and his OC basketball teammates will open the 2013-14 season against York (Neb.).
Senior point guard Kendre Talley and his OC basketball teammates will open the 2013-14 season against York (Neb.).

OKLAHOMA CITY (July 3, 2013) – Games against traditional rivals Southern Nazarene, Central Oklahoma and Oklahoma City University and an expanded Heartland Conference slate will be included in Oklahoma Christian’s men’s basketball schedule for 2013-14, released Wednesday.

The schedule for coach Dan Hays’ squad also includes an exhibition game against NCAA Division I Oklahoma. OC will visit Norman to play the Sooners on Nov. 4 at 7 p.m. It will be the Eagles’ first exhibition matchup against a Division I foe since playing OU on Halloween night in 2006.

The Eagles played 16 Heartland Conference games last season, with the results not counting in the standings. (If they had, OC would have finished fourth.) This season, with the addition of Rogers State and Lubbock Christian (Texas) to the league, OC will play 18 conference games. The Eagles will play seven conference foes twice each and four only once.

OC’s games will count in the Heartland standings, although conference officials refuse to allow the Eagles to compete for the regular-season title while the university is in the NCAA Division II membership process. OC went 19-12 overall last season – reaching the National Christian College Athletic Association title game – and 9-7 against league foes.

The Eagles will open the 2013-14 campaign against York (Neb.) at 3 p.m. on Nov. 9 in the traditional homecoming game. Three days later, OC will host one of its longest-standing rivals, Southern Nazarene, for a 7:30 p.m. game, followed by a visit to Langston on Nov. 15 for a 7 p.m. contest.

Another local rival, Central Oklahoma, will visit OC for a 7 p.m. game on Nov. 19. The Eagles eaked out an 80-78 win at UCO last season.

OC will travel across Edmond on Nov. 29-30 for games in the UCO Thanksgiving Classic. The Eagles will face former Sooner Athletic Conference rival Oklahoma City on the 29th and Southern Nazarene on the 30th. It will be the first time the four Oklahoma City-area schools – all of which now are in separate conferences – will participate in such an event with each other.

On Dec. 3, the Eagles will host Dallas Christian (Texas) at 7 p.m. and OC will wrap up nonconference play on Dec. 7 at Cameron at 3 p.m. That will mark the first meeting between OC and the Aggies since the 1984-85 season.

OC will open the Heartland Conference portion of its schedule at home for a pair of games, facing Texas-Permian Basin on Dec. 16 at 2 p.m. (a rare Monday conference game) and Lubbock Christian on Dec. 19 at 7 p.m. For the rest of the season, conference games will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays and 3 p.m. on Saturdays, except for games against Dallas Baptist (Texas), as DBU does not have a women’s team.

On Jan. 2, the Eagles will start a three-game road swing at Arkansas-Fort Smith. OC will visit Rogers State on Jan. 4 and Dallas Baptist on Jan. 11, with the latter game starting at 2 p.m.

OC’s next four games will be at home – Jan. 16 against Oklahoma Panhandle State, Jan. 18 against Newman (Kan.), Jan. 23 against Texas A&M International and Jan. 25 against St. Mary’s (Texas). That homestand will be followed by four straight road games, at McMurry (Texas) on Jan. 30, St. Edward’s (Texas) on Feb. 1, Texas-Permian Basin on Feb. 6 and Lubbock Christian on Feb. 8.

The Eagles will host Rogers State on Feb. 13, Arkansas-Fort Smith on Feb. 15 and Dallas Baptist on Feb 22, with the latter game set for a 2 p.m. tipoff.

After a visit to Newman on Feb. 27, the Eagles will close the regular season with a game at Oklahoma Panhandle State on March 1. As for the postseason, OC will participate in the NCCAA Central Region tournament March 12-15, at a site to be determined in Texas, and will hope to qualify for the NCCAA Championship, set for March 19-22 in Winona Lake, Ind.