Texas Southern falls to First Four opponent who lost its conference final but made it into Big Dance

TSU was favored to win by three points just before tip-off.

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Thursday, March 16, 2023
TSU wants to earn 4th-ever NCAA tourney win in First Four
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The Texas Southern Tigers hope to continue a hot streak in their postseason when they meet Fairleigh Dickinson in the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament First Four.

DAYTON, Ohio (KTRK) -- The Texas Southern Tigers men's basketball team couldn't keep up with a fast Fairleigh Dickinson team on Wednesday night, losing in the First Four round of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament, 84-61.

John Walker III scored 22 points in the losing effort. TSU senior and Shadow Creek alum, PJ Henry, was rendered ineffective, scoring just two points and turning the ball over four times.

TSU (14-21) fall to 3-4 in NCAA tournament games since 2018. Wednesday night's game was the Tigers' third straight in the play-in round before the round of 64 teams.

The Tigers still put together an unlikely but sensational Southwest Athletic Conference tournament run as the eighth seed, beating better SWAC teams - Alcorn State, Alabama A&M, and Grambling - to make their 11th-ever appearance in the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.

SEE ALSO: Shakas up! A&M-Corpus Christi earns 1st NCAA tourney win in First Four

Fairleigh Dickinson, a private university in Hackensack, New Jersey, actually lost in the Northeast Conference tournament final against Merrimack College, which was not eligible to enter the March Madness field due to an NCAA rule imposed on schools that transition from lower-level Division II to Division I. The runners-up in the final got into the Dance by default.

SEE ALSO: Marcus Sasser is a game-time decision to play in Houston's NCAA tourney opener with groin injury