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Buffs face tough foe in Montreat Saturday

Tanner Cook • Updated Jan 3, 2018 at 2:26 PM

As the new year begins, Milligan College faces the meat of its winter sports schedule.

Men’s basketball

After a riveting come-from-behind win Tuesday against conference foe Bryan College, the Buffs turn their full attention to Saturday’s game against Montreat.

The Buffs currently sit at 5-9 overall and 4-4 in the Appalachian Athletic Conference while Montreat is 6-1 in league play and 12-1 overall. The game is scheduled for tipoff at 4 p.m.

The Cavaliers’ only loss came against Union College, which is ranked No. 15 in NAIA Division II. Montreat, ranked 17th, is riding a four-game winning streak and leads Union in the AAC standings by one game.

This will be one of the best teams Milligan faces all year — with the exceptions of four exhibitions played over the holidays against higher-level opponents.

Milligan has won three in a row and has a 2-1 home record this season. Three of their five wins have come on Saturdays.

After facing Montreat, the Buffs hit the road for games at Truett-McConnell and St. Andrews before returning to Steve Lacy Fieldhouse on Jan. 16 for a conference game against Bluefield.

Women’s basketball

The Buffs have been in a slump as of late, but got back track with a big road win at Georgetown (Ky.) on Dec. 30. Then they lost at home Tuesday night to Bryan in a conference matchup.

The Buffs are 7-8 overall and 3-6 in the conference. The team hit a low-point when they lost three-straight conference games in the middle of December — all of them on the road.

The Buffs will travel to Brenau University (Ga.) on Thursday before playing Montreat at home on Saturday.

Brenau is 9-3 overall and 6-3 in league play. The Tigers are very stingy at home and boast a 6-1 record at home. Brenau has beaten Milligan in the past two meetings.

The Tigers have only allowed one opponent to score more than 65 points in Gainesville this season. That was in a 70-45 loss to Reinhardt.

On Saturday, the Buffs will return home and will have a favorable matchup against conference foe Montreat, who comes in with an overall record of 4-10 and a 3-6 record in the AAC. The Cavaliers are also not very good on the road, only having one victory and five losses.

The women’s team for Milligan has a stellar home record of 4-1, much like the men. The game against Montreat will begin at 2 p.m.

Swimming

Milligan’s swim team will dive back into action next weekend at Emory & Henry College (Va.).

The NAIA National Championships are just under two months away, beginning Feb. 28 in Columbus, Georgia.

Several swimmers have already met national qualifying marks, including freshman phenom Maggie Halloran. She will look to continue her onslaught of the Milligan record books in the near future.

Sophomore Sterling Burnett will also look to finish out a strong campaign in his second season for the Buffs.

Indoor Track & Field

The Buffs have had plenty of time since their last meet on the first two days of December to run quickly next weekend at a de-facto home meet at East Tennessee State.

The meet will feature plenty of high-level competition. Several athletes have already met national qualifying marks and there are still more meets to come.

The meet begins on Jan. 12 and will feature several key events like the 5,000 meters, 800 meters and several sprinting event trials as well as field events galore.

After the ETSU meet, the Buffs will travel to Roanoke College (Va.) for the Finn Pincus Invitational to be contested Jan. 26-27.

The AAC Championships will be run Feb. 16 at the JDL Fasttrack in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

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