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The NMCSD Wolfpack pose after their 51-27 victory over the No. 14 seed Toronto Rollin Raptors. (Photo by Christopher Di Virgilio).

Wolfpack Roll To Title

Online Exclusive posted Saturday, April 14, 2018 - 8:54pm

It was a night of champions at the National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament

DIVISON II

The Division II’s top seed cruised to the National Wheelchair Basketball Association’s National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament’s Division II title.

The No. 1 seed NMCSD Wolfpack took home the Division II title with a 51-27 victory over the No. 14 seed Toronto Rollin Raptors on Saturday afternoon at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky. The Wolf Pack won three of their four games by double-digits, including the championship game.

The Wolfpack’s Jhoonar Barrera scored a game-high 19 points and had four rebounds, while Matthew Grashen, who was named the Division II Most Valuable Player, recorded a double-double with 18 points a team-high 11 rebounds. Travis Greene added 12 points and eight rebounds, while Jaime Baltazar added two points and one rebound.

Just 3 minutes into the game, NMCSD led 10-0 thanks to eight points from Barrera. The Wolf Pack didn’t look back from there. Toronto trimmed the lead to 12-6 with 1:46 left in the first quarter and that’s as close as the game got.

NMCSD closed the first half with six straight points to take a 26-14 halftime lead and went on an 8-0 run midway through the third quarter to pull away for good.

Toronto knocked off three lower-seeded teams to reach the final, including a 52-51 victory over the No. 7 seed Wisconsin Thunder in Friday’s semifinals, a 56-48 second-round win over the No. 11 seed Lakeshore Storm and a 63-53 first-round victory over the No. 3 seed Fort Lauderdale Sharks.

Benjamin Tumack led Toronto with eight points and added six rebounds, while Jason Noval had seven points and a game-high 14 rebounds. Tamara Steeves (four points, one rebound), Elodie Tessier (four points, four rebounds), Claire Buchanan (two points, one rebound) and Erica Gavel (two points, two rebounds) also played and scored for Toronto.

The Wolfpack defeated the No. 16 seed Sportable Rim Riders 67-38 in the first round, earned a 58-53 victory over the No. 8 seed Tampa Bay Strong Dogs in the second round and defeated the No. 5 seed Charlotte Rollin’ Hornets 55-42 in the semifinals.


The New York Rollin' Knicks defeated the No. 3 seed Dallas Wheelchair Mavericks 72-59. (Photo by Christopher Di Virgilio).

DIVISION I

Duo Lifts Knicks In Overtime To Claim Championship

Patrick Anderson and Steve Serio took over in overtime. The New York Rollin’ Knicks’ inside/outside duo put together one impressive extra period and helped lift them to their first National Wheelchair Basketball Association National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament (NWBT) Division I title in four years.

Serio and Anderson combined for 14 of the team’s 18 points in overtime and No. 1 seed New York defeated the No. 3 seed Dallas Wheelchair Mavericks 72-59 at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky.

The U.S. men’s national wheelchair basketball team captain and Division I Most Valuable Player, Serio scored a game-high 29 points with seven coming in overtime, while Anderson had 22 points with seven coming in overtime as well. They helped end Dallas’ three-year NWBT tournament champion reign and avenge a 2017 83-78 double-overtime Division I NWBT championship game loss last year.

After the Rollin’ Knicks’ David Eng left a game-winning jumper short at the buzzer at the end of regulation, New York went to its bread and butter in overtime. Anderson, who also had six of his 12 rebounds in overtime, scored the Rollin’ Knicks first five points in the extra period off a three-point play and two free throws.

Dallas’ Aaron Gouge (16 points, three rebounds) made a basket to cut the deficit to 59-56 with 3:59 remaining, but then Serio finished things off. He scored seven of New York’s final 13 points in the period, including a 3-pointer, an inside shot and two free throws.

Dallas had trailed 54-51 with less than a minute left when Bobbie Nickleberry hit a deep three from the left top of the key to tie the game at 54 with 44.9 seconds left. Dallas missed one shot in the final 30 seconds to take the lead or win, while New York missed two.

Nickleberry led the Wheelchair Mavericks with a double-double of 18 points and 18 rebounds. Daniel Fik added 12 points and one rebound. Jason Nelms (five points, one rebound), Andreas Kraft (four points, four rebounds), Jermell Pennie (two points, one rebound) and Austan Pierce (two points, one rebound) also scored.

Fabrizio Shoo (seven points, six rebounds), Kevin Grant (six points, three rebounds), Paul Ward (six points, two rebounds) and Eng (two points, two rebounds) also contributed for New York. The Rollin’ Knicks won 80-44 over the No. 16 seed Mary Free Bed Pacers in the first round, defeated the No. 8 seed Albuquerque Kings 62-33 in the second round and beat the No. 5 seed MedStar NRH Punishers 66-43 in the semifinals.

DIVISION III

Fisk Helps Lift Pacers To Title

Two last-minute shots by Ariel Fisk helped the RHI Pacers secure the National Wheechair Basketball Association National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament’s Division III championship.

Fisk made an inside basket with 14.9 seconds left and hit one of two free throws with 4.1 seconds left to lift the No. 3 seed RHI Pacers to a 44-42 victory over the No. 5 seed Harrisonburg Cardinals in the NWBT’s Division III title game Saturday night at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky.

Fisk finished with four points and seven rebounds overall, including three points and six rebounds in the second half.

RHI’s Kyle Killworth led the Pacers with a double-double of 25 points and 10 rebounds, while Matt Buchi added 10 points and five rebounds.

Harrisonburg had chances a the end to win the game, but James Carter (four points, three rebounds) missed a shot inside the paint with 4.1 seconds left before Fisk grabbed the rebound and was fouled. Fisk made the first free throw attempt and missed the second and Harrisonburg’s Tim Moubray rebounded the ball and called timeout with 2.5 seconds left. Harrisonburg’s inbounds pass was knocked away and the Pacers held on.

Harrisonburg led by eight points in the third quarter but the lead slipped away thanks to Killworth, who was named the Division III Tournament Most Valuable Player, Buchi and Fisk.

Anthony Alger led Harrisonburg with a double-double of 14 points and 13 rebounds, while Moubray added nine points and 17 rebounds. Macario Morin had seven points and two rebounds. Anthony Streiff II (four points, two rebounds) and Theodore Luster (four points, one rebound) also scored for the Cardinals.

Harrisonburg had advanced after defeating the No. 1 seed Connecticut Spokebenders 39-27 in the semifinals. The Cardinals knocked off the No. 12 seed Triad Tracks 43-24 in the first round and took care of the No. 13 seed Pittsburgh Steelwheelers 46-28 in the second round.  

RHI’s Matthew Marshall (three points, two rebounds) and Daniel Henson (two points, four rebounds) also scored.

RHI rolled to a 49-18 first-round victory over the No. 14 seed Chicago Skyhawks, escaped with a 58-57 win over the No. 11 seed Tyler Thorns in the second round and upended the No. 7 seed Triangle Thunder 56-40 in the semifinals.

JUNIOR DIVISION

JUNIOR NIT DIVISION

The No. 22 seed Motor City Wheelz shook things up in this bracket and made it to Sunday’s 10 a.m. Junior NIT National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament title game at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky.

The Motor City Wheelz will take on the top team, the No. 17 seed Mary Free Bed Junior Pacers, for the championship.

After rolling past No. 27-seeded ATX 49-14 in Friday’s first round, Motor City upset the No. 19-seeded Denver Junior Rolling Nuggets 47-42 in Friday’s second round and then knocked off the No. 18-seeded Mad City Badgers 32-27 in Saturday’s semifinals.

The Mary Free Bed Pacers earned victories over the No. 32 seed MS Wheelcats (49-26), the No. 25 seed Cincinnati Dragons (53-44) and then the No. 20 seed Synergy Junior Bulls (67-56) in Saturday’s semifinals.

PREP DIVISION

The No. 1 Minnesota Rolling Rowdies advanced to the Junior Prep National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament championship at noon Sunday when they’ll take on the No. 3 seed Charlotte Purple at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky.

Minnesota rolled to 41-14 first-round win over the No. 16 seed Chicago Skyhawks and a 34-11 second-round victory over the No. 9 seed BlazeSports Junior Hawks before hanging on for a 24-21 win over the No. 4 seed Lakeshore Sharks in Saturday’s semifinals.

Charlotte Purple defeated the No. 14 seed Cincinnati Dragons 44-12 and the No. 6 seed OKC Wheels of Thunder 41-18 on Friday before upsetting the No. 2-seeded LWSRA Hawks 24-17 in Saturday’s semifinals.

VARSITY DIVISION

The top two seeds will meet in the Varsity Division National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament title game.

No. 1 seed TIRR Memorial Hermann Houston Junior Hotwheels will take on the No. 2 seed BlazeSports Junior Hawks at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Varsity Division title game at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky.

TIRR Memorial Hermann remained undefeated this season, taking down the No. 16 seed Sportable Spokes (63-40) and No. 8 seed Peoria Wildcats (64-43) on Friday and then the No. 4 seed WASA Junior Bucks (74-52) in Saturday’s semifinals.

BlazeSports defeated the No. 15 seed Rancho Renegades (64-34) and the No. 7 seed Utah Rush (57-37) on Friday and then held on for a 56-47 victory over the No. 3 seed RHI Racers in Saturday’s semifinals.

 

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Wolfpack Roll To Title

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