ATLANTA, GA–The #9-ranked Division II Charlottesville Cardinals wheelchair basketball team took a six-player squad to the annual Shepherd Shootout tournament in Atlanta this past weekend and got knocked around by the Division I and Collegiate teams there.
The Cardinals tangled unsuccessfully with the #9 Division I Miami Heat, the #18 Division I Shepherd Stealers, the Division I Memphis Rollin’ Grizzlies, and the University of Alabama men’s and women’s team–both defending 2017 national champions.
“We learned a lot that will help us throughout the season,” said player-coach Tom Vandever. “Our margins of defeat against these teams was between 17 and 22 points, which is a good indication of the level of talent between the Division I/Collegiate nationally-ranked level and the Division II ranked level.”
Over the weekend Brandon Rush was the Cardinals’ high scorer, averaging 13.4 points per game. Gino Wilson averaged 10.8 points/game, followed by Jacob Tyree with 8.0 points/game, Tom Vandever with 7.0 points/game, Eddie Wimbish with 2.8 points/game, and Marcus Johnson with 0.4 points/game.
The Cardinals head to the University of Pennsylvania-Edinboro this coming weekend for the ‘Boro Shootout tournament, and will face a mix of Division I, Collegiate, and Division II teams.
The five losses this weekend drop the Cardinals record on the year to 5-7. The Cardinals are currently 5-2 in Division II play.
The National Wheelchair Basketball Association has nominated the Cardinals for their “Team of the Month” Division II recognition and has also nominated Brandon Rush for their Division II “Player of the Month” recognition. Individuals can vote online by clicking on http://www.nwba.org/teamofmonth and on http://www.nwba.org/playerofmonth.