March 4, 2012
Three CCIW men's basketball teams advance to NCAA Sectional round
NAPERVILLE, Ill. – For the first time in College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin (CCIW) history, three teams will take part in the sectional round of the NCAA Division III Men’s Basketball Championship. CCIW champion North Central, along with at-large qualifiers Wheaton and Illinois Wesleyan all won its regional final game on Saturday to advance to the sectional round. It marks the second time in three years that the CCIW will be represented by two or more teams in the sectionals and fifth-straight year the conference will have a representative in this round. Illinois Wesleyan advanced to its second sectional in three years after a 108-101 double overtime victory against Hope, the No. 1 ranked team in the country, on Saturday. The Titans last won the national title in 1997. North Central’s 72-68 victory over regional host Washington (Mo.) on Saturday gave the Cardinals multiple NCAA postseason wins for the first time in the program’s history. The win also gave the Cardinals a 6-1 record against nationally-ranked teams this season as the Bears came into the game ranked 19th. Wheaton will make its third sectional appearance in five years after a 73-62 win over Edgewood at Wisconsin-River Falls on Saturday. The Thunder advanced to the sectional final in 2008 and the sectional semifinals in 2009. North Central plays Wittenberg, Wheaton faces Wisconsin-Whitewater and Illinois Wesleyan plays the College of Wooster in the sectional round at a time and site to be determined.