Tri-State 66ers make playoff push in first season in Pittsburg

The Tri-State 66ers aim to make a playoff push in the final two games of their first season in Pittsburg.

PITTSBURG, Ks. – The Tri-State 66ers are trying to make a statement in their first season in the Professional Basketball Association.

“The desire actually came after we won our first game,” says player Jamaal Mitchell. “Everyone looked at the league and was like, ‘We can do this. It’s attainable. It’s not impossible.’ So once we got that first win under our belt, guys started to lock in and focus more. Everybody figured out what their role was and started doing their job.”

There’s two games remaining on their regular season schedule, and a playoff spot is on the line.

“We just joined the league late and to know that we were able to do this and have a chance to play in the playoffs the first year…that’s great,” says head coach and owner, Tim Simpson.

“We know what we’ve worked for, so it’s time to go get it,” says Mitchell. “It’s time to prove to everybody, ‘Hey you guys didn’t want us to be here at first and now were here.’ Everyone comes from a background of struggle, nobody had anything given to them. Everybody has had to earn their spot, so I think a lot of us have a chip on our shoulder, so it gives us that extra drive that extra push to want to win it all.”

A ticket to the post-season will be hard-earned. The 66ers play the top team in the division at home on Saturday.

“It’s been amped up. It’s been very intense,” Mitchell says. “Coach has intensified practice a lot. We’ve also been doing individual workouts and stuff like that. So its been very intense. I’m just ready to play.”

“We’re coming out and we’re fighting like some caged Pit bulls,” Simpson says. “We’re coming out to go do it.”

The 66’ers host the Louisiana Kingdom Riders on Saturday. The game begins at 5pm at the Pittsburg YMCA.