Edinboro, Pa. – The women’s championship game of the 2016 NWBA National Intercollegiate Wheelchair Basketball Tournament is set and will include the top two seeds. The No. 1 University of Illinois Illini will tip off with the No. 2 Lady Movin’ Mavs of the University of Texas at Arlington, scheduled for McComb Fieldhouse on the campus of Edinboro University on Saturday, March 12 at 2 p.m. Eastern.
The Lady Mavs were tested in the first half with five ties, however pulled away on a 14-0 run in the last 6:33 of the first half for a 29-15 advantage. The Lady Movin’ Mavs maintained its advantage and increase the lead to as many as 27 in the second half for a convincing 69-47 victory.
Leading the way for UTA were 2016 U.S. Paralympic Team hopefuls Rose Hollermann (13 for 20 for 31 points) and Abby Dunkin (7 for 14 for 17 points) who contributed a cumulative 48 points. Alabama was led by Arinn Young who was 16 for 35 from the floor for 32 points.
The Fighting Illini women’s team and No. 1 seed advance to the championship game with its win by forfeit over the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater. The Whitewater women played an illegal lineup, because of too many classification points for its athletes.
The University of Texas at Arlington men advanced to the semi-finals with a 62-47 win over host and No. 7 seed Edinboro University. Jan Gans led the Movin’ Mavs was 12-26 in field goals for a total of 29 points, and brought down 14 rebounds. Edinboro’s top point grabbers were Mike Adams and Blake Rush with 16 and 15 points, respectively.
The University of Alabama outscored No. 6 Southwest Minnesota State University, 64-44. The Crimson Tide took the early lead and never looked back as they distributed the ball to three players who had double-digit point totals. Michael Auprince led the Tide with 18, with Jordan Bartley putting back 16 and Dequel Robinson scoring 10 points. Southwest Minnesota State was led by Joel Adams with 17 points, and David Evjen with 11 points.
The No. 2 seeded University of Texas will play against No. 3 University of Alabama in the first semi-final, scheduled for Friday, March 11 at 4 p.m. Eastern.
In the other half of the men’s bracket, the University of Illinois, the No. 5 seed, upended the No. 4 Tigers of the University of Missouri, 51-39. Spencer Heslop led the charge for the Fighting Illini going 12-17 from the floor for 28 points. Missouri’s Marshall Lindsay had a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds, while James Bohnett contributed 12 points.
The final quarter-final game on Thursday saw the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater cruise to a 95-62 win over the Arizona State University Sun Devils. The Warhawks spread the ball around to five players scoring double digits – Derrick Bisnett (11-16 for 22 points); AJ Messmer (10-12 for 21 points); Christian Seidel (10-11 for 20 points); David Fleming (9-12 for 18 points); and Guthrie Lindquist (5-5 for 10 points). The Warhawks are in search of its third consecutive National title.
Playing in its second game of the day, the Sun Devils’ top scorers were Robert Reed with 25 points, going 11 for 24 from the hardwoods, and David Gonzales adding 18.
Joining Illinois in the semi-finals for the 2 p.m. tip on Friday will be Wisconsin-Whitewater.
Arizona State University overcame a seven-point deficit and needed an overtime period against Auburn University to advance into the first round of the tournament, 81-71. Gonzales lead the way for the Sun Devils with 31 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists. Luis Raygoza contributed 18 points in the first half, while Kelly Goodman came in the second half for 15 points. Auburn was led by Hunter Alvis, who put up 26 points and pulled down 21 rebounds, and Blake Loftin, who has 22 points.
Friday’s games will feature the men who start at 8 a.m. Eastern at McComb Fieldhouse.
Championship Saturday will feature the placement games on the men’s side starting at 8 a.m. with the fifth-place game, followed by the women’s third-place game at 10 a.m. The men’s bronze-medal game tips at noon.
The two National title games are set for 2 p.m. with the women’s featuring the two semi-final winners, with the men’s National title game set to conclude the tournament at 4 p.m.
This marks the 39th edition of the NWBA National Intercollegiate Wheelchair Basketball Tournament, and marks the third time that Edinboro University has hosted. The Fighting Scots were NIWBT runner-ups in 2007. The NWBA Intercollegiate Division is comprised of nine men’s and five women’s universities.
The entire 2016 NWBA National Intercollegiate Wheelchair Basketball Tournament will be webstreamed live and produced by Edinboro University on the NWBA website at www.nwba.org.
2016 NWBA National Intercollegiate Wheelchair Basketball Tournament
Play-in Game: Arizona State University def. Auburn University, 81-71, OT
First Round: University of Texas at Arlington def. Edinboro University, 62-47; University of Alabama def. Southwest Minnesota State University, 64-44; University of Wisconsin-Whitewater def. Arizona State University, 95-62
Women’s Semi-Final Results: University of Illinois won by forfeit over University of Wisconsin at Whitewater; University of Texas at Arlington def. University of Alabama, 69-47