The East Kentucky Miners today announced that the CBA's board of directors voted yesterday to shorten the 2008-2009 regular-season due to a very difficult and recessionary economy. The regular-season will end Tuesday, Feb. 3, and the CBA Championship series will begin in Albany, NY on Thursday, Feb. 5. It will be a best-of-three series between the Lawton-Ft. Sill Cavalry and the Albany Patroons, who will finish the regular season with the CBA's top two records. The Miners will finish this season in third-place, with a record of 10-7, having lost only once on their home court.
'Coming into this season, the other team owners and I knew this year was going to be a difficult one due to the economy,' stated Miners Co-owner and President Demetrius Ford. 'But we didn't expect things to be this difficult. Professional sports franchises are heavily dependent on corporate sponsorships and season ticket sales in order to operate efficiently. When you combine a recessionary economy, record home foreclosures and corporate layoffs, you have the perfect storm of fear. And this kind of fear quickly drops sponsorships and nonessential investments to the bottom of a potential sponsors list of priorities. At the close of our first season here in Pikeville, we secured enough corporate sponsorship commitments to easily cover our 2008-2009 operating budget. But as this season drew near, and the economy continued to weaken, those commitments all but disappeared. Not just in our home market, but in every CBA city. I believe every team in this league made a valiant effort to make it through such tough times, but from a business point of view, I think the decision to shorten the season was the right one. This way, teams can preserve capital for next season, the league can strengthen itself by bringing in more teams for 2009-2010, and the CBA can come back much stronger in its 63rd year of operation in a friendlier economy.'
The Miners co-owner expressed his gratitude to fans, sponsors, staff and others.
'Words cannot express how terrible I feel for our fans, season ticket holders, sponsors, players and staff,' said Ford. 'Our players went to war for us on the court, and they were great ambassadors in the community. Coach K and I will do all we can to help place these players in other leagues around the world so they can continue to pursue their dreams. To our fans and sponsors, God willing, I promise to do everything in my power to bring the Miners back to you next season. I know what the Miners and professional basketball mean to Pike and the surrounding counties, and I know what this franchise can do to help boost the local economy and how important our success is to the success of the Expo Center.'
Finally, Ford concluded, 'I want to thank everyone who bought a ticket to a Miners game, especially our season ticket holders. I want to thank the Board and management of the Expo Center for all they've done for us. I want to thank my staff and those who volunteered their time to help produce the best form of entertainment these mountains have ever had. I want to thank the Diamond Girls for all their hard work and dedication both when entertaining our fans in the arena and out in the community. And I want to extend a very special and heartfelt thank you to every one of our sponsors, who not only supported us this season, but were willing to step up when others were too afraid to.'
'The CBA Commissioner and the owners of the league made the right choice in shortening the length of the season,' said East Kentucky Miners Coach Kevin Keathley. 'In these tough financial times, it has affected all of us. This will provide all teams a chance to adjust to the economic climate. I would have loved to have played the remaining 11 games of our schedule, but this made the most sense and I will begin preparing for next season.'
The Miners coach reflected on the abbreviated season in which his team showed much promise.
'This season was one of the more competitive seasons I've experienced as a basketball coach,' Keathley commented. 'The franchises in the CBA did a good job of putting an excellent product on the floor and I hope our fans feel the same as I do. We came very close to reaching the CBA finals, and our players should be commended for such a valiant effort. Two first class organizations will square off for the championship and I wish both teams the best of luck.
'For us, we aren't going anywhere. We will begin getting ready for the 2009-2010 season tomorrow. I will begin looking at potential draft picks from this year's college senior class.
'We will continue to go out in the community this offseason and be active in several important causes. I want to thank the fans and the sponsors who helped make this season a success in my view. And I promise you, we will bring the most exciting brand of basketball in the state of Kentucky next season, just like we have the past two years.'
Representatives from the Miners organization will be in contact shortly with season ticket holders and sponsors with further information. Direct all immediate questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Indianapolis pulls away from Mississippi in final quarter; Baltimore routs Middle Tennessee at home - 2 days ago
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BALTIMORE 107, MIDDLE TENNESSEE 78: (Arnold, Md.) - With both teams entering tonight with only one victory each on the season, and knowing that a defeat would all but eliminate them from postseason contention, Baltimore and Middle Tennessee came out in the first quarter in a back-and-forth battle with 10 ties and lead changes. But things slowly began drifting towards the direction of the hosts, as they went on a 21-10 run late in the second quarter to go into the intermission with a slim... [read more]
BALTIMORE 107, MIDDLE TENNESSEE 78: (Arnold, Md.) - With both teams entering tonight with only one victory each on the season, and knowing that a defeat would all but eliminate them from postseason contention, Baltimore and Middle Tennessee came out in the first quarter in a back-and-forth battle with 10 ties and lead changes. But things slowly began drifting towards the direction of the hosts, as they went on a 21-10 run late in the second quarter to go into the intermission with a slim two point advantage. But the second half was all Baltimore, as they capitalized on a 16-4 run to open up the period, to extend their lead to 14 points. Although Middle Tennessee cut the deficit to five late in the third quarter, Baltimore pulled away in the final period with a 37-13 run, to lead by as many as 31 points, en route to their largest margin of victory this season. Baltimore (2-4), who kept their postseason hopes alive, were led by Torey Fassett (6'6''-F) (25 points) and Kendall Allison (6'3''-G, college: Ohio Valley) (14 points), while Middle Tennessee (1-4), who lost their fourth consecutive contest, were led by Frank Thaxton (6'2''-G-88, college: Tennessee St.) (18 points) and Fabien LaRonde (6'2''-G-90) (16 points). Baltimore hosts the defending champions, Fort Wayne, with two games at home next weekend, while Middle Tennessee plays a critical home-and-home series next weekend with rivals, Bowling Green. INDIANAPOLIS 84, MISSISSIPPI 70: (Memphis, Tenn.) - Unlike the earlier matchup between Baltimore and Middle Tennessee, which was a battle of last place teams, tonight's contest in Memphis featured two teams aiming for not only their fourth win of the season, but also coming closer to a postseason berth. In the first matchup between the two teams in Indianapolis during the opening weekend of the season, Indianapolis outscored Mississippi by 15 points in the first half. Yet, tonight had a different beginning to the game. After Indianapolis took a five-point advantage in the first quarter, Mississippi outscored the visitors by seven in the second frame to go into halftime with the lead. It was only the second time, out of seven games this season, that Mississippi had led at the midway point of a game. But this was short-lived, as Indianapolis regained the lead in the third quarter and outscored Mississippi by 12 points in the final frame, en route to their fourth victory of the season. Indianapolis (4-2), who won their first road game of the season, were led by their dynamic duo in the backcourt: Anthony White (6'3''-G-92, college: Mercer) with 19 points and Chrishawn Hopkins (6'2''-G-91, college: Wright St.) with 16 points, while Mississippi (3-4), who lost their third consecutive game, were led by Anthony Jones with 20 points and Marico Stinson (6'3''-G-88, college: Ky Wesleyan) with 15 points. Indianapolis wraps up their final road trip of the season with an afternoon contest tomorrow afternoon at Bowling Green, where with a victory, Indianapolis will clinch a playoff berth. Mississippi will enter a bye week next weekend, before playing their season finale, against Bowling Green at home two weeks from today. Courtesy of: playcba.com
Illinois stuns Indianapolis in rematch, Baltimore earns first win of the season in upset of Mississippi - 10 days ago
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ILLINOIS 100, INDIANAPOLIS 88: (Danville, Ill.) - Two weeks ago, Indianapolis easily dismantled Illinois at home, and were looking to sweep the season series tonight across the state border in Danville. But tonight was not an evening for road teams in the CBA, as Illinois jumped out the gates with a 27-10 run and never looked back. They extended the lead to 19 points in the second quarter, and finished the third quarter with a 22-point lead at 76-53, ultimately cruising to their second co... [read more]
ILLINOIS 100, INDIANAPOLIS 88: (Danville, Ill.) - Two weeks ago, Indianapolis easily dismantled Illinois at home, and were looking to sweep the season series tonight across the state border in Danville. But tonight was not an evening for road teams in the CBA, as Illinois jumped out the gates with a 27-10 run and never looked back. They extended the lead to 19 points in the second quarter, and finished the third quarter with a 22-point lead at 76-53, ultimately cruising to their second consecutive home victory this season. Illinois (2-2) was led by Tyron Criswell (6'4''-G, college: Nevada) and Kashif Watson (6'4''-G-87, college: Idaho), with 18 points each, while Indianapolis (3-2) was led by Chrishawn Hopkins (6'2''-G-91, college: Wright St.) with 20 points, Anthony White, Jr. with 18 points, and Tyler Bibbs (6'6''-F-93, college: St.Francis, IN) with 17 points. Illinois travels to Fort Wayne tomorrow evening to face the defending champions, while Indianapolis embarks on a road trip to Mississippi and Bowling Green next weekend. BALTIMORE 84, MISSISSIPPI 74: (Severn, Md.) - After completing a brutal four-game road trip to start the season, Baltimore enjoyed returning home to begin a four-game homestand, and looking for their first victory of the year this evening against a Mississippi club who had won three out of their last four contests. Baltimore, similar to their Illinois expansion team counterparts tonight, started the game strong, going on a 17-0 run midway through the first quarter to take a 28-10 lead after the first period. In the second quarter; however, Mississippi held the hosts to just nine points, to cut the deficit to two points with three minutes remaining in the first half. But that's as close as the visitors were able to get, as Baltimore pushed the lead to double-digits in the third quarter, and used a 9-3 run late in the fourth to hold off any potential Mississippi comeback. Baltimore (1-4) who earned their first win of the season was led by Torey Fassett (6'6''-F) (22 points), while Mississippi (3-3) was led by Marico Stinson (6'3''-G-88, college: Ky Wesleyan) and Jerry Hampton (6'9''-C, college: Le Moyne-Owen) with 18 points each. Baltimore hosts Middle Tennessee next Saturday evening, while Mississippi returns home for their final two games, hosting Indianapolis next Saturday night as well. Courtesy of: playcba.com
Indianapolis outlasts Baltimore in offensive shootout; Bowling Green stuns Mississippi on the road - 16 days ago
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INDIANAPOLIS 125, BALTIMORE 114: (Indianapolis, Ind.) - With a chance to maintain their positioning as one of the top-3 teams in the league, Indianapolis did not want to waste that opportunity against winless Baltimore this evening, in the first ever matchup between the two clubs. After a closely contested first quarter, Indianapolis used an 11-0 run early in the second quarter to gain separation from the visitors. Although Baltimore, who was on their second road trip to Indiana in as man... [read more]
INDIANAPOLIS 125, BALTIMORE 114: (Indianapolis, Ind.) - With a chance to maintain their positioning as one of the top-3 teams in the league, Indianapolis did not want to waste that opportunity against winless Baltimore this evening, in the first ever matchup between the two clubs. After a closely contested first quarter, Indianapolis used an 11-0 run early in the second quarter to gain separation from the visitors. Although Baltimore, who was on their second road trip to Indiana in as many weeks, cut the deficit to just two points in the third quarter, Indianapolis executed a devastating combination of a 9-2 run and a a 10-1 run in the fourth quarter to cruise to a comfortable double-digit victory. Indianapolis (3-1) was led by Brandon Evans (6'3''-G) (27 points), Anthony White, Jr. (24 points), and Chrishawn Hopkins (6'2''-G-91, college: Wright St.) (21 points), while Baltimore (0-3) was led by Torey Fassett (6'6''-F) (25 points), Kendall Allison (6'3''-G, college: Ohio Valley) (22 points), and Benny Iko (20 points). Indianapolis travels to Illinois next Friday night, while Baltimore squares off against Bowling Green in Kentucky tomorrow afternoon. BOWLING GREEN 103, MISSISSIPPI 99: (Memphis, Tenn.) - With first place Mississippi looking to hold their grip as one of the top-3 teams in the league, similar to Indianapolis earlier in the evening, against winless Bowling Green, things did not go as well for them at home. Bowling Green dominated play for the beginning, leading the game after each period. Although Bowling Green nearly squandered a double-digit lead late in the game, they earned their first victory of the season, and improved to 4-0 all-time against Mississippi, including 3-0 on the road. Bowling Green (1-0) was led by Damarius Smith and Christopher Kopooshian (5'10''-G-93, college: Glendale CC, CA) with 20 points each and Jared Stephens (5'10''-G, college: Carson-Newman) and Monte Burney with 18 points each; while Mississippi (3-2) was led by Anthony Jones (24 points), Marico Stinson (21 points) and Jerry Hampton (6'9''-C, college: Le Moyne-Owen) (20 points). Bowling Green hosts Baltimore tomorrow afternoon for their home opener, while Mississippi will fly to Maryland next weekend for the Baltimore home opener. Courtesy of: playcba.com
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