2005-2006 Season Review
OVERALL: 26-7, TRANSOUTH: 9-3 (T-1st of 7)
TRANSOUTH REGULAR SEASON CO-CHAMPION: POSTSEASON RESULTS: TranSouth Tournament: Defeated Martin Methodist 81-73 (Semifinals), Defeated by Union 92-79 (Championship Game) NAIA Tournament: Defeated Lambuth 82-67 (First round), Defeated by Azuza Pacific 78-75 (Sweet 16)
After advancing to the NAIA Sweet 16 last season, the Trevecca men’s basketball team opened the season by receiving 7 votes in the NAIA pre-season top-25 poll and were ranked 36th.
The loss of three seniors from the TranSouth Co-Championship team combined with only one senior resulted in even the most loyal fans wondering what the season would hold. Everyone knew the team returned a nucleus of skillful players, but could they fill the shoes of three of the programs finest players who graduated the season before.
Trevecca started this year with a seven game winning streak, then lost two of three before starting a nine game win streak. After losing two of three again, the team finished the season as strong as they started by winning seven of their last nine.
Trevecca opened the season with a 97-78 victory over Michigan-Dearborn for homecoming and then hosted the Robert Garret Classic on November 11-12. The men knocked off Shorter and Wayland Baptist in the RG Classic and then defeated Indiana Wesleyan and NCAA Division-II Clarion College in the Geneva (Pa.) Tournament to improve to 5-0. Alex Renfroe was the tournament MVP and earned TranSouth Player of the Week honors. Joining Renfroe on the All-Tournament Team for the Trojans are Collins Onyando and Jerod Perry. Trevecca renewed its rivalry with cross-town rival and NCAA Division-III power Fisk University and added its sixth victory. Trevecca improved its winning streak to seven with a win in the opener of the Plainview (Texas) Lion Classic at Wayland Baptist. The host team ended Trevecca’s perfect record the following day.
Trevecca saw its 7-1 start produce the No. 16 ranking in the first NAIA regular season poll of the year and then bounced back with a win over No. 11 Lindsey Wilson College in the Lou Cunningham Classic at Campbellsville University but fell again to Campbellsville University by 2 points the extra day. Despite the loss, Trevecca moved up to No. 15 in the next poll.
Trevecca rolled off a record nine-game winning streak that started with a trip to Shorter College and continued with two wins in the Trojan Boosters Endowment Classic (over Indiana Wesleyan and Belhaven College). Trevecca defeated NCCAA-power Tennessee Temple and moved into the top 10 of the NAIA Poll. Conference play started with a win at Cumberland University, which helped Trevecca remain at No. 10 in the next poll. Trevecca defeated Martin Methodist and saw Josh Helton earn the TranSouth Player of the Week Award. Trevecca picked up its biggest win of the year against No. 3 Union University at Moore Gym. Trevecca hit the road again and defeated Freed-Hardeman. Josh Helton’s play was key part of the Trojans nine-game win streak, and for the second time in the stretch, Helton was honored as the TranSouth Player of the Week. Trevecca defeated non-conference foe Concordia-Selma to extend its winning streak to nine games.
The win streak ended in Batesville, Ark., when Lyon College edged the Trojans 76-70. The loss was the first in conference play and made the No. 7 Trojans 17-3 and 4-1 in the conference. Trevecca rolled back across the state to play Tennessee Temple in Chattanooga and bounced back with a win. The joy was short lived as the Trojans boarded back up and headed to Memphis to play TranSouth-newcomer Crichton College and were handed their second loss in three games.
Finally the Trojans returned to Moore Gym and a packed house of Moore Maniacs and produced another win over Cumberland University, one that would evolve into the team’s winning six of the final seven regular season games. Trevecca senior Jerod Perry surpassed the 1,000-point mark in that game, and he became the 32nd member of the Trojan 1,000-point club on a three-pointer with 14 minutes remaining. The victory was Coach Sam Harris’s 200th career win at Trevecca.
Trevecca dropped to No. 12 in the next poll but soon jumped back into the top 10 following a victory over No. 3 Union in overtime at the Fred. After the win at Union, Alex Renfroe was named the TranSouth Player of the Week for the second time this season. With Trevecca back in the top 10 at No. 9, the Trojans were pushed to overtime against visiting Freed-Hardeman. The team followed with a win at Martin Methodist to improve to 22-4 on the season.
Trevecca had a first place battle with Lyon ahead, and the Trojans came up short and found themselves in a four-way tie for first place in the conference race. Trevecca won a non-conference game with Oakwood College and then finished off the regular season with a win over Crichton College. The win gave TNU a tie with Union for first place in the conference for the second year in a row, when Lyon lost at Martin Methodist and Trevecca eliminated Crichton from the tie.
Trevecca earned the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament with a season sweep of Union.
After a bye in the first round of the TranSouth tournament, Trevecca hosted Martin Methodist for a semifinal matchup. Trevecca defeated a game RedHawk team 81-73 and set the stage for the championship game at Trevecca with No. 5 Union. The Trojans held a four game winning streak over Union, but the Bulldogs won the tournament title at Moore Gymnasium 92-79.
Trevecca earned the 11th seed in the NAIA Division-I Men’s Basketball Tournament, held at Kansas City’s Municipal Auditorium, drawing Lambuth University in the final game of the tourney’s first day. After a hard-fought first half, the Trojans found themselves trailing 40-39 at the intermission. Coming out of the break, Trevecca took control of the game, mounting a 12-0 run to take the 51-40 lead. Lambuth would close the gap to 10 points at 69-59, but that was as close as they would get, as Trevecca pulled out to the 82-65 victory.
The win earned the Trojans a sweet 16 berth for the second consecutive year, and a date with the Tournament’s No. 6 seed, the Cougars of Azuza Pacific University. Once again, the game was close throughout the first half, with the Trojans trailing 40-34 at the halftime break. Coming out of the locker room, Azuza stretched their lead out to 11 at 67-56 with just under five minutes remaining, but the Trojans slowly chipped away, cutting the deficit to just two points with 43 second left. That was as close as it would get, however, as the Cougars hit clutch free throws down the stretch, and Alex Renfroe’s bid to tie the game at the buzzer would not go, and the Trojans were eliminated 78-75.
For the second year in a row, the Trojans were well-represented in the post-season awards. Two members of the Trojans’ squad, Alex Renfroe and Collins Onyando, were named NAIA All-Americans. Renfroe was named to the first team, while Onyando garnered Honorable Mention status.
Renfroe, a 6-foot-1 sophomore from Hermitage, Tennessee, was the catalyst to the Trojans' offense this season, as he averaged 14.5 points per game over the course of the season. Renfroe also notched an average of 6.5 rebounds per game and he led the team, and was fourth in the nation, with an average of 6.6 assists per contest. His 2.6 steals per game average was also good enough for fourth best in the NAIA. In the NAIA National Tournament, Renfroe led his team to their second consecutive Sweet 16 appearance, a first in School History. In Trevecca's first round game against Lambuth University, Renfroe scored 20 points and grabbed 17 rebounds, recording one of his 10 double-doubles on the season.
Onyando, a 6-foot-5 sophomore from Nairobi, Kenya, was Trevecca's go-to big man this season. He was second in the NAIA in blocks per game, with an average of 2.1, and set a Trevecca single season record for blocks with 70. He was the Trojans' leading post-scorer, averaging 12 points per game for the year.
Renfroe and Onyando were both named to the 2005-06 All-TranSouth first team, and they were joined on the all-conference teams by three teammates. Josh Helton and Jerod Perry were named second team All-TranSouth, while Brian Odour earned a spot on the All-Freshman team.