Bucs Head to Alabama for Men's Basketball Tourney

Bucs Head to Alabama for Men's Basketball Tourney
When the Bucs bear down defensively, they are a tough out for opponents. Photo by Joel Auerbach

MIAMI SHORES, Fla. -- Barry men's basketball team gets its first true road test of the season when the Buccaneers compete in the West Alabama Thanksgiving Classic Friday and Saturday.

Barry (2-1) plays Stillman College (0-1) at 4 p.m. Friday and West Alabama (1-2) at 2 p.m. Saturday in Livingston, Ala. This will be the Buccaneers' first trip outside the state of Florida since the 2010 NCAA Division II Tournament in Russellville, Ark.

"It's going to be a new experience for us with our first real test on the road," said Bucs senior forward Filip Toric, who is averaging 10.3 rebounds per game. "It will be a different environment."

Barry is coming off a blowout win over Puerto Rico-Mayaguez on Monday in which the Bucs shot over 50 percent from the floor, point guard Justin McCoy had a career-high 11 assists and swingman Aaron Martin scored a career-high 20 points. But the Bucs realize the teams they'll see this weekend offer different challenges.

West Alabama opened the season against Division I Alabama, losing that contest, 80-49. The Tigers beat Selma, 84-67, in a game Sandy Underwood scored 25 points. Underwood had 24 points in Wednesday's loss to Tennessee Wesleyan.

In a nine-point loss to Florida Southern, Stillman's D'uanaway Barnes had 21 points off the bench, and Ladarius Rhone scored 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds. Markeith Madison had 14 points and 10 rebounds.

Stillman and Barry have never met on the basketball court.

"We're excited that we're going to see two good teams," Toric said. "This will show us where we stand. We gained offensive confidence in the last game. We showed that our defense works effectively when we put in a team effort."