College basketball excitement has hit Salisbury State in a big way.
The school earned its first-ever trip to the final 16 of the NCAA Division III basketball tournament Saturday night with a come-from-behind 107-99 overtime victory over Kean College, setting the stage for the Sea Gulls to not only play in the final 16, but also to do so on their home court at the Maggs Center on the campus of Salisbury State.
The school will be host to a four-team Division III sectional tournament Friday and Saturday, one of four sectionals that will determine the final four teams for the NCAA Division III championship at Wittenberg University March 20-21.
A sellout crowd of 1,932 was at the Maggs Center Saturday night to watch the win over Kean. The Sea Gulls were down by 14 points with nine minutes toplay and rallied to tie the game at 94 at the end of regulation.
Salisbury State (27-1) scored the first 10 points of overtime on the way to its 26th straight win. Dameon Ross had a game-high 30 points for Salisbury, and Andre Foreman scored 28 points and had 15 rebounds.
Foreman (25.5 ppg) and Ross (24.6 ppg) form the most prolific scoring combination in Division III. Foreman is seventh in the nation and Ross is 10th.
The 26 consecutive victories for Salisbury State is the longest winning streak at any division of college basketball. The last loss for the Sea Gulls came on Nov. 23, 114-102, to Hampden-Sydney on the road.
Salisbury State has won 19 in a row at home dating back to last season.
Tickets ($8 for general admission adults and $6 for Salisbury students) are available at the Guerrieri University Center on campus through Friday and must be purchased for both nights.