Whitewater is epicenter of tournament action
WHITEWATER UW-Whitewater's Kachel Gym of Williams Center will be the hub of NCAA Division III basketball tournament action today and Saturday.
UW-Whitewater hosts the first and second rounds of the NCAA Division III women's basketball tournament tonight and Saturday, while the UW-Whitewater men will be host to a first-round game Saturday afternoon.
On the women's side, Whitewater (21-6) plays Wisconsin Lutheran College (25-2) in the second game at 7:30 p.m. today. Carthage College (23-4) plays Thomas More College (27-1) at 5:30 p.m. in the opener.
The winners meet 7 p.m. Saturday at Williams Center.
Whitewater is making its sixth consecutive NCAA III tournament appearance and 11th in school history. The Warhawks advanced to the final four of the 1982 AIAW III tournament in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and the 2008 NCAA III tourney in Holland, Mich.
Whitewater won the WIAC championship, and lost the league's tournament title game in overtime last Sunday to UW-Stevens Point.
Coach Keri Carollo's squad is led by the inside game of senior Cortney Kumerow and outside game paced by junior Kaitlyn Thill.
The 6-foot-1 Kumerow is averaging 13.3 points and 7.5 rebounds per game, while the 5-5 Thill is averaging 12.1 points. Nine Warhawks are averaging at least seven minutes of playing time a game.
Wisconsin Lutheran won the Northern Athletics Conference Tournament with a 75-52 win over Concordia (Wis.). WLC is making its third consecutive NCAA tourney appearance and the fifth in school history.
Warriors' senior guard Shavon Dillon averages 14.3 points, 4.9 rebounds, 4 assists and steals per game. Carthage defeated Wheaton College (Ill.), 61-52, for the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Tournament title. Thomas More topped Washington and Jefferson 72-59 for its seventh consecutive President's Athletic Conference Tournament championship.
Warhawk men face Dubuque
Meanwhile, UW-Whitewater begins defense of its NCAA Division III men's basketball championship 3 p.m. Saturday, hosting the University of Dubuque.
The Warhawks are making their 18th NCAA III postseason tournament appearance. Whitewater has advanced to the Final Four four times (1983, 1984, 1989, 2012), winning national titles in 1984 in Grand Rapids, Mich., in 1989 in Springfield, Ohio, and last year in Salem, Va. Whitewater is 30-15 all-time in NCAA III tournament play.
Whitewater defeated Northwestern College (Minn.), 83-68, the University of Saint Thomas (Minn.), 91-62, Wheaton College 67-56, and Virginia Wesleyan, 76-62, to advance to the Final Four last year. The Warhawks defeated MIT 71-56 in the national semifinal, and defeated Cabrini College, 63-60, to win the title.
Coach Pat Miller's Warhawks squad finished second in the WIAC regular season, and won the WIAC Tournament to earn the league's automatic berth in the NCAA III tournament.
Four Warhawks are averaging double figures in scoring, led by sophomore guard Quardell Young's 11.9 average. Freshman Darnell Harris is at 11.4; senior Luke Knobel is at 10.9 and Elkhorn High graduate Eric Bryson is at 10.3.
Harris, a 6-foot-7 freshman, also leads the Warhawks in rebounding with 5.9 a game. Bryson is averaging 4.6 boards a game.
Dubuque won the Iowa Athletic Conference Tournament to earn it NCAA DIII berth, defeating Wartburg College, 73-60.
Miles Hookstead, a former Whitewater High standout, is one of four seniors on the Spartans' roster. Hookstead averages 5.3 points and 3.6 rebounds.
Junior guard Chris Frazier leads Dubuque in scoring at 13.9 points per game. Dubuque has six players with between 20 and 28 steals this season. The Spartans faced one WIAC team this season, losing to UW-Stout, 61-51, Nov. 25 in Menomonie.
The Whitewater-Dubuque winner plays the winner of the first-round matchup between North Central College (24-3) and Centre College (21-5) on Saturday, March 9.
Tickets are sold at the University Center ticket office located on the main campus mall during regular business hours, and at the Kachel Gym prior to the game. Tickets are $8 for adults, $3 for students, and $3 for senior citizens
There will be free tickets to the first 150 students for each game a UW-Whitewater basketball team plays this weekend. Tickets are available an hour before tipoff.
Call 262-472-2222 for ticket information.