Final Four recap
Ursinus (30-4) avenged a regular-season defeat and beat UMass Dartmouth at its own game last night, holding UMD to less than 33 percent shooting and forcing 18 turnovers. The most damaging moments came in the second half as Ursinus held UMD scoreless for 5:47, during which time they reeled off 15 consecutive points to grab a 51-35 lead. UMD never recovered from that haymaker to get closer than 14 points. Ursinus, which had lost to UMD by 10 in the regular season, is now in the championship game as a 7 seed. Coach barjaz is going for his third national championship at the school and looking to win his first national title in 15 Rupp seasons.
As expected, two schools that had relied heavily on defense to reach the Final Four produced a low-scoring contest as Penn St. Altoona (30-4) topped Rivier by a 55-45 final count. The story of the game actually came in the first half. Rivier jumped in front early and was threatening to run away with matters, leading 21-9 at the midway point of the first half. Unfortunately for the GNE's last representative, its basket with 9:18 left was its last before intermission. Penn St. Altoona locked down in a big way, holding Rivier to a single free throw for the rest of the half and storming back to carry a 28-24 lead into the locker room. The second half was a series of runs by PSA to stretch that lead to 8-10 points, followed by surges from Rivier to trim the gap back to 3-4 points before PSA would push out to its next lead. Coach frankgrimes1 goes for his second national title at PSA, his first coming in an undefeated Season 57. PSA knocked off Ursinus 70-61 on opening night of the year.