McKay has Flames back in NCAA Tournament

SALT LAKE CITY, Ut. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- Ritchie McKay knows how to get a team to the NCAA Tournament. He was on three of Tony Bennett's coaching staffs for NCAA Tournament teams.

McKay is now the head coach at Liberty and he has the Flames back in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2012. Liberty won the Atlantic Sun tournament on March 10, beating top-seed Lipscomb in the championship game.

"Well the conference championship game came at a good time for us during spring break." McKay said, "I think our guys got some mind-space back, having a week off, no class."

The 12-seed Flames (28-6) tied a school record for wins in a season with the championship game win. Now the Flames will look to break that record with a win over five-seed Mississippi State in the first round Friday night, coming off a 10 day break since last playing.

"We took off three out of the first four days," McKay said. "I think they should be pretty well rested. Practice there and see if we can't mess around and compete on Friday."