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70th NWBT Ends With a Bang as TIRR Memorial Hermann Hotwheels Win Junior Varsity Championship

04/15/2018, 3:00pm CDT
By Pasha Zolfaghari

The 70th National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament presented by ABC Medical ended with an exciting Sunday as the Junior Divisions wrapped up their seasons. The first championship game played was the NIT Championship pool, followed by the Junior Prep and Junior Varsity championships.

The NIT Championship game was played between the 17 seed Mary Free Bed Jr. Pacers and the 22 seed Motor City Wheelz. The Motor City Wheelz started out hot, scoring the first two baskets of the game, but the Pacers picked up their form shortly after that. They had an eight-point lead at halftime and their barrage did not stop throughout the rest of the game. In the end, the Pacers defeated the Wheelz, 43-41, to win the NIT pool Championships.

The second championship game of the day was for the Junior Prep Division at 12:00 p.m. EST. The one seed Minnesota Rolling Rowdies played the three Charlotte Rollin’ Hornets – Purple in a highly anticipated game after both teams had a strong tournament. Through the first half, the teams stayed neck and neck with each other, but the second half was when the Hornets took their advantage. Led by Preston Howell on both ends of the floor, the Hornets took the victory with a final score of 32-26.

To end the day, the Junior Varsity Championship game was played between the TIRR Memorial Hermann Hotwheels and the Blazesports Jr. Hawks. The game, which had the loudest fans of the day by far, was a thriller from the very beginning. Neither team ever had a double-digit lead and fans never knew what to expect after the lead changed so many times. But the Hotwheels were able to pull out the 62-56 victory through the leadership of Peter Berry and Carrington Marendes.

With the end of the Junior Division Championships, the National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament presented by ABC Medical ended as the largest tournament ever in its 70 years of existence.

Here are all of the Junior Division award winners:

Junior Division Awards

Junior Varsity Division

Female 1st Team All-Tournament

  1. Ali Ibanez of the Utah Rush
  2. Elizabeth Becker of the Charlotte Rollin’ Hornets
  3. Moria Paulus of the WASA Jr. Bucks
  4. Denise Rodriguez of the Dallas Jr. Mavericks
  5. Jordan Kozloski of the Blazesports Atlanta Jr. Hawks

Male 1st Team All-Tournament

  1. Nick Oman of the RHI Racers
  2. Samuel Armas of the BlazeSports Atlanta Jr. Hawks
  3. Kyle Blake of the Utah Rush
  4. AJ Hammer of the RHI Racers
  5. Miles Hill of the Charlotte Rollin’ Hornets

Male 2nd Team All-Tournament

  1. Garret Castillo of the TIRR Memorial Hermann Hotwheels
  2. Peter Berry of the TIRR Memorial Hermann Hotwheels
  3. Jonathan McNamara of the Peoria Wildcats
  4. Luke Robinson of the Seattle Jr. Sonics
  5. Chauncy Wulf of the Peoria Wildcats

Female Varsity MVP

Emilee Gustafson of the Minnesota Jr. Rolling Timberwolves

Male Varsity MVP

Carrington Marendes of the TIRR Memorial Hermann Hotwheels

Sportsmanship Award

Tyler Tippin of the Lakershore Lakers

 

NIT

Female 1st Team All- Tournament

  1. Josie DeHart of the Denver Jr. Rolling Nuggets
  2. Riley Ljungdahl of the Denver Jr. Rolling Nuggets
  3. Sarah Switzer of the UAH Chargers
  4. Elizabeth Guerin of the Mad City Badgers
  5. Hannah Exline of the RHI Racers B
  6. Breanna Clark of Katie’s Komets

Male 1st Team All-Tournament

  1. Gabe DenBraber of the Mary Free Bed Jr. Pacers
  2. TaeVon Selby of the Motor City Wheelz
  3. Bernard Guerin of the Mad City Wheelz
  4. Ryan Glatchak of the Synergy Jr. Bulls
  5. Joe Rafter of Katie’s Komets

Male 2nd Team All-Tournament

  1. Nathan Nowak of the Denver Jr. Rolling Nuggets
  2. Michael Cunningham of the Denver Jr. Rolling Nuggets
  3. Jerret Darden of the OKC Wheels of Thunder
  4. William Oberg of the Mary Free Bed Jr. Pacers
  5. McKinley Reed of the St. Louis Jr. Rollin’ Rams

Female NIT MVP

Josie DeHart of the Denver Jr. Rolling Nuggets

Male NIT MVP

Gabe DenBraber of the Mary Free Bed Jr. Pacers

 

Junior Prep Division

Female 1st Team All-Tournament

  1. Sadie Absher of the Charlotte Rolling Hornets – Purple
  2. Lixi Tidemann of the Bennet Blazers
  3. Mary Mclendon of the Lakeshore Sharks
  4. Ally Tyler of the Minnesota Rolling Rowdies
  5. Ashlyn Olnick of the RHI Junior Racers

Male 1st Team All-Tournament

  1. Seith Horne of the Lakeshore Sharks
  2. James Pollard of the Bennett Blazers
  3. Kidus Ali of the Fairfax Falcons
  4. Malachi Heger of the OKC Wheels of Thunder
  5. Nick Deyo of the Minnesota Rolling Rowdies

Male 2nd Team All-Tournament

  1. Jah’Kyra Daniel of the Lakeshore Sharks
  2. Jack Binsfeld of the Minnesota Rolling Rowdies
  3. Ashton Taylor of the Cincinnati Dragons
  4. Zac Armas of the Blazesports Jr. Hawks
  5. Caleb Roach of the Charlotte Rollin’ Hornets – Purple

Male Prep MVP

Preston Howell of the Charlotte Rollin’ Hornets

Female Prep MVP

Harmonee Ruets of the LWSRA Hawks

Sportsmanship Award

KJ Fields of the Lakeshore Sharks

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