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The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Quakers advance to D-III Final Four after standout season

Bree Lavine/The Guilfordian
Guilford College hosted the Quakers men’s basketball NCAA Division III quarterfinals game against Christopher Newport University on March 9.

With four seconds left on the clock, Guilford College and Christopher Newport University are tied 48-48 on Saturday, March 9.

Tyler Dearman, a graduate student and forward for the Quakers men’s basketball team, goes in for a layup and makes it. Jahn Hines of CNU takes a desperate half-court three-pointer and it misses. After winning the NCAA Division III Tournament Quarterfinals, the Guilford College Quakers have advanced to the Final Four in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where they will play against Hampden-Sydney College (30-2), on March 14.

Going into the 2023-24 season, the Quakers had to adjust to a significantly different team after the departure of key seniors such as Myles Washington, Elijah Bowens and Jordan Davis. 

“Coming in, it was a lot different, because Jordan and Eli were our point guards, so some other guys had to deal with the ball being in their hands a little bit more, bringing the ball up against pressure more often than they were used to, said Julius Burch, a graduate student and forward for the Quakers. “Then with Myles, he was a great post presence and he gave us a spark off the bench. Those are things that were missing and other people had to fill those shoes so that we could be a great team.”

The Quakers started the regular season strong, winning all of their first eight games.  They played their ninth game in the Greensboro Coliseum Dec. 10 against their crosstown rivals, the Greensboro College Pride. The Quakers would go on to win that game 60-45, with their starting center Caleb Farrish scoring 20 points with a 6-of-11 three-point shooting completion.

The team’s first loss would follow on Dec. 19, when Shenandoah University defeated Guilford 65-58. Afterward, the Quakers returned to action with a two-game winning streak during the holiday classics to finish the year.

At the start of 2024, the Quakers would go on a three-game winning streak, until it ended Jan. 13 with a 61-65 loss to Randolph-Macon College. After that loss, the Quakers would end the month of January with five consecutive wins.

On Feb. 3, the team played Shenandoah University for the second time this season — an opportunity for them to avenge their loss to Shenandoah back in December. The Quakers would end the game with a 67-56 win, led by junior guard Luke Proctor’s 18 points, Dearman’s 16 points and 13 points from Burch,

“I think we learned from the first time what we needed to do. Also, playing at home, because playing a home game gives us a little more of a boost,” Dearman said. 

“Overall, we really wanted revenge on them badly,” Burch added.  “That was the first game that we lost in the regular season, so we really dropped the ball there. But coming back home, we knew what we needed to do. We knew they would be switching a lot, knowing how we wanted to exploit matchups, and we made it work. We got the matchups we wanted, we shared the ball, made plays for each other and in the end, it turned in our favor.”

Going into the ODAC tournament, the Quakers had a 22-3 win-loss record. “I anticipated for us to have that record,” Dearman said. “I wanted to be perfect, but some stuff happened and we couldn’t finish how we wanted to, but that’s still a pretty good record and we handled what we had to do in the regular season.”

“Not many people can say that they’ve won 22 games and only lost three in a 25-game season, so that’s just remarkable,” Burch said. “Hats off to all the work that the coaches and the players put in on a day-to-day basis, all the practices and film sessions and everything that we have put together to make us one team.”

As the Quakers began postseason play in the NCAA tournament, Dearman and Burch were genuinely excited. Both are playing in the tournament for the first time, and the men’s basketball team is playing in the tournament for the first time since 2019. 

“I’m glad that I’m able to play before I head out, and it’s truly an honor to host here,” Dearman said. The team played four NCAA tournament games on its home court in Ragan-Brown Field House before advancing to the Final Four.

Burch expressed similar thoughts as the Quakers prepared for their first NCAA tournament game, a March 1 matchup against Berry College. “I’m very excited and happy for the team. We’re getting the opportunity to do something great and something that hasn’t been done since the 2018-19 season,” he said. “This will be me and Tyler’s first time, so we want to make it worthwhile, get some wins and go all the way.”


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