03/04/05 — MOC's Clingan named top CVAC coach

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MOC's Clingan named top CVAC coach

By News-Argus Staff
Published in Sports on March 4, 2005 2:35 PM

GAFFNEY, S.C. - Mount Olive College men's basketball coach Bill Clingan was named coach of the year and three Trojans earned all-conference honors during the 2004-05 Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference men's basketball awards ceremony Thursday evening.

Limestone (S.C.) College is the site for the men's and women's CVAC tournaments, which continue today with semifinal-round play.

The Trojans' Elton Coffield, Sharome Holloway and Maurice Horton each earned All-CVAC honors.

Now in his 15th year as head coach at Mount Olive, Clingan has guided the Trojans to their best-ever season thus far, leading his squad to a 25-3 record and a share of the CVAC regular-season championship -- the program's first since 1999 -- with an 18-2 mark in conference play.

Mount Olive is ranked No. 13 in this week's NABC Division II Top 25, the highest-ever national ranking for Mount Olive men's basketball. The Trojans are ranked No. 2 in the final regular-season NCAA Division II East Region poll and could receive a bid to the NCAA Division II men's basketball tournament regardless of the outcome of this weekend's CVAC Tournament.

The 25 wins are also a school record, breaking the record of 23 wins set last year. Clingan has coached the Trojans to a record-setting season despite having lost five senior starters from last year's squad.

Coffield, a 6-foot-4 sophomore guard from Williamston, is a two-time CVAC player of the week and ranks fifth in the CVAC in scoring with a 17.7 average. Coffield, who has hit at least one three-pointer in 26 of 28 games this season, has the seventh-highest three-point field goal percentage in the nation.

Holloway, a 6-8 senior center from Phoenix, Ariz., is averaging 12.3 points and 7.5 rebounds per game for the season and has averaged more than 15 points and eight rebounds per contest over the past 15 games.

Holloway, an All-CVAC honorable mention last year and a preseason All-CVAC selection this year, also ranks third in the CVAC in blocked shots per game.

Horton, a 6-0 junior guard from Hampton, Va., has ranked among the national leaders in steals throughout the season, averaging 2.3 steals per game.

Mount Olive is the No. 2 seed in this year's CVAC men's basketball tournament and takes on No. 3 seed Barton in today's final semifinal contest at 8 p.m. The winner advances to Saturday's championship game against either top-seeded Pfeiffer or fifth-seeded Limestone.

The CVAC tournament champion earns an automatic berth to the NCAA tournament.

Rico Grier of Pfeiffer was named player of the year, while T.J. Taylor of Erskine earned freshman of the year honors.