Langley-based Spartans open pre-season against Charlotte

Former NBA all-star Mark Price takes his 49ers team into Langley to take on the TWU men’s hoops team

Trinity Western University’s men’s basketball team will open this year’s pre-season schedule with a stiff challenge, as the Spartans will host UNC Charlotte (NCAA Div. 1) in an exhibition tilt Aug. 12 at the Langley Events Centre.

Opening tip-off is at 7 p.m.

The contest will see the Spartans take on a 49ers side that is coached by four-time NBA all-star Mark Price. The point guard turned coach spent 12 seasons in the NBA and retired as one of the greatest shooters in league history.

The game with UNC Charlotte is part of the 49ers’ nine-day foreign tour from Aug. 10 to 18 that will also see them take on UBC Aug. 11 and Victoria Aug 15.

“This is an excellent opportunity for our team to get in some early season action against a high quality opponent,” Spartans coach Aaron Muhic said. “It’ll be a great experience for the guys and a fantastic way for us to start the season. It’s also pretty cool for me to have the honour of coaching against Mark Price. He was one of my favourite players to watch in the NBA growing up. I am sure his team will play the game with heart and intelligence and they’ll will put on a great show for the fans.”

The preseason tilt is scheduled to be streamed live at www.canadawest.tv.

Price joined UNC Charlotte in 2015 and coached them to a 9-9 record in Conference USA.

Last year, the 49ers lost in the Conference USA quarter-finals to eventual conference champion Middle Tennessee, who went on to upset Michigan State in the NCAA tournament.

The 49ers have made 11 appearances in the NCAA tournament and advanced as far as the Final Four in 1977. From 1995 to 2005, UNC Charlotte qualified for the NCAA tournament eight times, with the team’s most recent appearance coming in 2005, when the 49ers lost to NC State in the first round.

The Spartans are coming off a Canada West regular season in which they posted a 1-19 record in Muhic’s first season as TWU’s bench boss.

Click here for TWU’s full pre-season and regular season schedule for 2016-17.

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