By Matt Bos, NAIA Media Coordinator
POINT LOOKOUT, Mo. – Top-seeded Indiana Wesleyan Wildcats opened defense of its national championship in convincing fashion as they made quick work of Brescia University (Ky.). The Wildcats extended their tournament winning streak to six games with a 77-56 win over the Bearcats.
The unseeded Bearcats from Brescia, making their first appearance ever at the NAIA DII Men's Basketball National Championship, jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead behind buckets from Jermain Langley and Kyle Wilgus. The Wildcats responded in a big way as they scored 16 of the next 19 points to force BU into a timeout trailing 16-8.
The lead continued to grow in the opening half for the Crossroads regular season and tournament champion as they led by as many 17 in the first twenty minutes and by 14 (39-25) at the break.
The Bearcats tried to hang around early in the second and the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference champions stayed within 15 for most of the first 10-12 minutes but the depth of IWU was just too much as they finished with four players in double-figures and had seven different players post at least six points.
Bob Peters led IWU with 13 points, followed closely by Lane Mahurin (12) and both Josh Mawhorr and Jonny Marlin with 10.
Indiana Wesleyan finished the night shooting 46.5% (27-58) from the floor while the Bearcats were just behind them at 43.4% (23-53). One big difference came at the free-throw line as the Wildcats connected on 16-20 compared to just 6-11 from the Bearcats.
Austin Morris was the lone Bearcats player in double figures with 14. Brescia ends their season with an overall record of 19-11.
Indiana Wesleyan advances to the second round on Friday where they will play either No. 16 Warner Pacific (Ore.) or Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) at 4 p.m. CST.
-- article courtesy of NAIA