Oshkosh, NWU book trip to title game

More news about: Nebraska Wesleyan | UW-Oshkosh
Jack Hiller, NWU
Jack Hiller hit a big 3-pointer in overtime to give Nebraska Wesleyan the lead for good as the Prairie Wolves advanced to the title game for the first time since 1997.
Photo by Dave Hilbert, d3photography.com

UW-Oshkosh became the sixth Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference team to play in the Division III national championship game, while Nebraska Wesleyan knocked off Springfield in overtime to return to the title game for the first time in 21 years. 

Nebraska Wesleyan finished the second half on a 10-3 run to tie the game and the Prairie Wolves scored the final 12 points of the game to defeat Springfield 90-78 in overtime in the 2018 Division III men's basketball national semifinals at the Salem Civic Center in Salem, Virginia. 


Adam Fravert
Adam Fravert had his second-best scoring night of the season for UW-Oshkosh.
Photo by Dave Hilbert, d3photography.com

Ryan Garver, one of the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference players of the year, scored 16 points after halftime to help lift Nebraska Wesleyan (29-3). That included making two of three foul shots with a minute to go to cut Springfield's lead to three. Then, after Jake Ross missed the front end of a one-and-one with 58 seconds left, Garver forced up a tough shot with 35 seconds left. He drew a touch foul as well, and sunk the free throw to tie the game at 73-73 with 35 seconds left. Ross had the ball in his hands on the final possession of regulation for the Pride (22-9), but his shot came after the shot clock expired.

Cooper Cook hit his seventh 3-pointer of the night to open the scoring in overtime and give Nebraska Wesleyan a lead, and the Prairie Wolves never trailed in the extra session. 

Cook finished with a game-high 25 points, while Garver scored 21, shooting 5-for-8 from beyond the arc. Ross scored 21 for Springfield, along with a game-high seven assists, but had six turnovers as Springfield turned the ball over 12 times after halftime.

UW-Oshkosh booked its ticket to the national title game with a 73-57 win vs. Ramapo. The Roadrunners started off with a 9-2 run, but UW-Oshkosh (25-7) scored the next seven points to tie it up.

After a back-and-forth first half, keyed by seven points from Patrick Peterson off the bench for Ramapo, the Titans got a 3-pointer from Brett Wittchow and a jumper from Adam Fravert to take a 34-27 lead into the locker room.

Josh Ford hit a 3-pointer to open the second half, and followed Ben Boots' 3 with a layup. Peterson hit a jumper with 13:58 left in the game to cut the UW-Oshkosh lead to 42-38. But that was as close as the Roadrunners (25-6) would get. Wittchow hit back-to-back 3-pointers with 3:20 and 2:57 left to put the game out of reach.

The Titans' Fravert led all scorers with 21 points, adding 13 rebounds and five assists, while Wittchow added 18, Boots 13 and Jack Flynn 11. Tommy Bonacum and Peterson finished with 11 points apiece for Ramapo, while Ford had 10 points, three rebounds, and three assists.