CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.---Basketball season is right around the corner. The Chattanooga Mocs are hard at work preparing for the upcoming campaign.
GoMocs.com completes its three-part season preview series today highlighting the posts. The previous looks at the point guards and wings are linked above. The game preview for Covenant launches on Wednesday, November 7, with a special “Chaos” page with video and infographics due on “Chaos Eve”, Thursday, November 8.
All this leads into the season opener on Friday, November 8 at 5:30 p.m. Chattanooga starts off with a doubleheader with the men facing nearby Covenant, while the Lady Mocs welcome Alabama into McKenzie Arena in the night cap.
The post features the Mocs top returning scorer and rebounder, along with an explanation. The fours and fives, or power forward and center, come with names such as “mismatch” and “madman” in Chaos.
The mismatch guy typically is a smaller four who uses quickness and athleticism as an advantage over bigger fours. The madman is at the front of the press…someone with incredible energy and enthusiasm establishing a chaotic presence the moment the Mocs transition from offense to defense.
Z. Mason (14.9, 7.6) is the story when it comes to the post. The veteran four led the Mocs in scoring and rebounding earning All-SoCon mention last season. He is poised for a strong 2013-14.
He’s looking to become just the eighth Moc to top 1,000 points and 500 rebounds in his career. As a smaller four at 6-6, 235-lbs., Mason is a key at the mismatch position which maximizes his quickness and skill.
Junior Lance Stokes (2.9, 2.1) is a mad man. Not in a dangerous way mind you, rather that’s just his job description in “CHAOS”. He has the high-energy job at the front of the press. His length there will serve him as will his quickness guarding in the post.
Junior Martynas Bareika (3.2, 2.4) and freshman T.J. Williams (Wilmington, N.C.) provide depth at the four and five. Bareika, who has bulked up to 215 pounds, moves to the post from the wing this year. He should use his quickness as an advantage at both ends of the floor.
Williams is the biggest player on the Mocs squad eligible to compete this season. He comes in with a strong ability to score in the post. He has a variety of moves and is the best back-to-the-basket performer offensively for the Mocs.
FROM PILLAR TO POST WITH WADE:
“Our two mismatch guys are Z. Mason and Marty Bareika. The mismatch position is very critical for us.
“Z. is somebody I think that can be the league player of the year. He has can score in the post, in the mid-range and is a very good three-point shooter. He can drive from the perimeter. We’re going to use Z. a lot of different ways. We are going to give him a great opportunity for success offensively.
“We moved Marty from the wing to the mismatch. It fits his skillset very well. He’s a guy who can make shots for us. He quick and we’ve added some bulk so he can battle in the post. He’ll be able to attack and use his quickness to his advantage against bigger guys in the post.
“Lance has really bought in to being the ‘Madman’. That’s going to be his identity for us. He has to have high energy being on the ball…being all over the ball. He’s going to be a guy who goes all-out all the time, flying around the court making plays happen.
“T.J. Williams is our best back-to-basket scorer. He can score a lot of ways down there. We’re working on him in using his body down low. We’re excited what he brings as a low post presence.”
It is a big competition weekend for Chattanooga. Titled “Beat Week”, both basketball teams and the wrestling squad open their seasons on Friday. The Southern Conference leading Mocs football squad hosts a key league matchup with Wofford the next day. Four major events will be completed within a 24-hour window.
The campus kicks off “Beat Week” tomorrow, Tuesday, November 5, with a Pool Party Pep Rally. Starting at 5:30 p.m., there will be a wealth of activities with free food and giveaways at the fabulous Aquatic and Recreation Center across the street from McKenzie Arena.
There are three options to pre-purchase tickets for one or more games as the season approaches. Season tickets as well as a flex plan are available along with the single-game option. Season tickets went on sale a few weeks ago. They can be purchased for as little as $125. Purchase Season tickets, on sale for as little as $125, or the Basketball Flex Plan for $99. Click the links for more information or call the UTC Ticket Office at (423) 266-MOCS (6627).GoMocs.com is the official website of the Chattanooga Mocs. The Mocs can also be followed on their official Facebook page or on Twitter. Find out how to join the UTC Mocs Club and support more than 300 student-athletes by clicking here.