Aftershocks prep for quarterfinals matchup with Florida TNT


Sean Marty / The Sunflower

Aftershocks guard Tyrus McGee drives towards their basket in their game against Team Challenge ALS on July 20 inside Charles Koch Arena.

With just three wins shy from the $1 million prize, the Aftershocks will return to action in The Basketball Tournament on Saturday.

In the quarterfinals of the tournament, the Aftershocks will take on Florida TNT in hopes of advancing to the semifinals. The game is slated for 11 a.m. and will be broadcast on ESPN. 

Ahead of the matchup, the Aftershocks held media availability in hopes of continuing its $1 million journey. 

Scouting Florida TNT

The Aftershocks face one of the surprise teams of the Wichita Regional on Saturday when they take on Florida TNT on Saturday. They defeated No. 1 seed Eberlein Drive in the third round, clinching their trip to Dayton. 

Florida TNT is led by their guard trio of Kenny Boynton, Chris Warren, and Dominique Jones. The three players have combined to average 48.7 points per game in this year’s TBT. 

“We know they’re a good team, they score a lot but we feel we’re a good defensive team so it’ll be a clash of offense and defense,” Aftershocks guard Conner Frankamp said. “We also feel that we can score too so hopefully we’ll have the upper hand and we can get enough stops to win the game down the stretch.”

The Aftershocks have found success this year while playing with a smaller lineup and a greater commitment to defense and rebounding. Aftershocks forward Markis McDuffie said that their toughness has been a key to that early success. 

“I think this whole tournament people look at our size and everything, they thought they could take advantage but I think us being the tougher team is why we pulled it out,” McDuffie said. “I think we have to continue to do that at an even higher level because it’s obviously going to be tougher, teams are going to get much bigger.”

Addition of Tre McLean

As the Aftershocks return to action on Saturday, they will be without one of the key pieces in the team’s three wins. Former Shocker Zach Brown didn’t make the trip to Dayton as Brown had to report to Germany for his season overseas. 

After initially trying to bring in another former Shocker, the Aftershocks added Tre McLean to replace Brown on the roster. McLean played collegiately at the University of Chattanooga and played with Rashard Kelly overseas in Russia.

“I know he’s going to be a great addition to the team,” McDuffie said. “He’s a grown man, he knows what he’s coming into so I’m sure he’s going to do the best he can for the team and be a vocal part of the team. We’re only three wins away from a million, so I know he’s coming in ready.”

Aftershocks head coach Zach Bush said that they are hoping McLean can help replace Brown’s intensity on defense. 

“We’re excited,” Bush said. “I think he brings a similar skill set that was so valuable for us, having length, being able to guard multiple positions, being able to catch and shoot from the three. I think he’s going to fit in really well.”

Playing away from Koch

The Aftershocks will see its first TBT action outside of Wichita this weekend, after advancing to Dayton.

The Aftershocks succeeded off the home crowd in their third round victory over Team Challenge ALS, with Charles Koch Arena recording the second-largest crowd (6,510) in TBT history — second only to the AfterShocks’ debut game at Koch Arena in 2019 (7,154).

“It’ll be different for some of the guys, that home floor in Wichita was pretty incredible,” Frankamp said. “The fans were great, it was super loud. Obviously it won’t be as loud here so maybe the guys will feel less pressure, which will be nice for us.”

McDuffie said that not playing in front of the home crowd will help ease some of the pressure.

“I think we’re going to be more calm, cool and collected out there on the court,” McDuffie said. “Playing in Wichita in front of those fans, it’s like every shot you shoot is like a game-winning shot. It’s just so much fun playing in there that you can lose focus on the game and I think the biggest over there is staying focused and staying locked in.”