Men's Basketball: Panthers headed to Abilene, Texas, for first two rounds of NCAA Division III tournament

Men's Basketball: Panthers headed to Abilene, Texas, for first two rounds of NCAA Division III tournament

2017 NCAA DIVISION III BRACKET

The LaGrange men's basketball team is headed to Abilene, Texas, for the first and second rounds of the 2017 NCAA Divison III National Tournament.

The Panthers (18-10), the USA South Conference champion, will face pod host and American Southwest Conference champion Hardin-Simmons (22-6) on Friday at 8:30 p.m. EST. LC is making its fourth straight NCAA appearance, while the Cowboys are in their second straight national tournament. It will be the first meeting between the teams.

LaGrange has won eight of its past nine games entering the tournament. Hardin-Simmons comes into the game on a seven-game winning streak.

Emory (18-7) plays Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference champion Texas Lutheran (19-9) in the first game Friday at 6:30 EST. The two winners will play Saturday at 8 p.m. EST. The Panthers defeated Emory 95-84 at the Oglethorpe Classic earlier in the season..

This will be LaGrange's first game in Texas since playing the University of Dallas during the 2006-07 season. The Panthers are the first USA South team to play in four straight NCAA tournaments since Christopher Newport did it from 1997-2001.