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Sports & Recreation

A weekly look into the Division III Great Lakes Region men’s basketball season.


MARIETTA, Ohio — While the 2016-17 National Champion was crowned less than two weeks ago, plans are well underway for one of the premier Division III events of the 2017-18 men's basketball season.

The game schedule has been set for the inaugural Great Lakes Invitational to be hosted by Marietta College November 17-18, 2017. Joining the Pioneers in Ban Johnson Arena will be Hope College (Mich.), Mount St. Joseph University, Wittenberg University, Birmingham-Southern College (Ala.), Dickinson College (Pa.), St. John Fisher College (N.Y.) and the University of St. Thomas (Minn.).

All eight teams posted records of .500 or better this season and four played in the NCAA Tournament. St. Thomas lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament this year, while St. John Fisher bowed out in the second round. Marietta and Hope both made it to the Sweet 16.

The Great Lakes Invitational game schedule follows with each school's 2016-17 final record in parenthesis.

Friday, November 17, 2017:
2:00 p.m. — Wittenberg (18-9) vs. Mount St. Joseph (20-7)
4:00 p.m. — Birmingham-Southern (14-14) vs. St. John Fisher (23-6)
6:00 p.m. — St. Thomas (19-8) vs. Dickinson (16-11)
8:00 p.m. — Marietta (26-5) vs. (Hope (23-7)

Saturday, November 18, 2017:
1:00 p.m. — Wittenberg vs. Birmingham-Southern
3:00 p.m. — Hope vs. St. John Fisher
5:00 p.m. — Mount St. Joseph vs. Dickinson
7:00 p.m. — Marietta vs. St. Thomas

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The calendar has flipped to March which means the NCAA Tournament is upon us and 7 teams have made the field from the Great Lakes:

Marietta (OAC)

Calvin (MIAA)

Thomas More (PAC)

Medaille (AMCC)

Hope (MIAA)

Hanover (HCAC)

Wooster (NCAC)


I break down the bracket and make my selections for weekend while also breakdown the pods with 3 coaches from the region. Hanover's Jon Miller (7:24), Marietta's Jon VanderWal (24:23), and Medaille's Mike Blaine (33:24) all joined me to talk about their draws and the keys to advancing this weekend. How many Great Lakes squads will be in the last 16 come Sunday? All this and more in another 50 minutes of Great Lakes talk!



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