ALEXANDRIA, La. (LSUA) The Red River Athletic Conference will bring its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments to central Louisiana for the 2016-17 season, to be played at the newly renovated Rapides Coliseum on March 2-4, 2017, it was announced on Wednesday.
The tournaments bring the conference’s top six men’s and women’s basketball teams to the Coliseum to battle it out for the conference title and an automatic berth into the NAIA National Championship Tournaments. Ten total games will be played at the Coliseum over the tournament’s three days of action.
“We are extremely excited to host this great tournament,” said LSUA Athletic Director Brent Porche, “and to showcase the great basketball from the Red River Athletic Conference in a beautiful new venue in the Rapides Coliseum. We are hopeful the members of the Alexandria/Pineville community will follow the lead of our community leaders in supporting our athletic programs at LSUA and make this a first class event.”
“The RRAC is excited to bring the conference’s basketball tournament to Alexandria and the state of Louisiana,” said RRAC Commissioner Tony Stigliano. “The tournament is one of our biggest events on the conference calendar, and we’re confident that LSUA and the City of Alexandria will be outstanding hosts. Brent Porche has done an excellent job of putting together the bid and the planning for the tournament.”
Last season’s RRAC Tournament, hosted by Wiley College and played at LeTourneau University in Longview, Texas, saw three men’s teams in the NAIA Top 25 Coaches Poll and two ranked women’s teams make the field, including the #1 team in both polls at the time of the tournament, LSUA’s men and Our Lady of the Lake’s women. The Saints dominated the field to win the women’s title while Langston’s men got a last second basket in overtime to take the men’s championship over LSUA. It was the second straight season the men’s title game went an extra five minutes, both involving the Generals.
With the tournament’s move to Alexandria, this will be the first time since the RRAC went to a single site format in 2001 that the champions will be determined outside the state of Texas.