LISLE, Ill. – Eric Kittel and the Falcons played for a historic come-from-behind victory in the NACC Tournament Championship game, but Benedictine was too strong during a 93-89 victory over Concordia Wisconsin inside the Rice Center.
Final Score: Benedictine 93, Concordia Wisconsin 89
Location: Rice Center (Lisle, Ill.)
Records: Benedictine 23-4, Concordia Wisconsin 18-10
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Concordia Wisconsin found itself down 12 points with one minute to play in the title game and Eric Kittel put the team on his back in an effort to pull off a momentous run against the league's defending champions.
- Jake Jurss began the endeavor of an upset by knocking down a 3-pointer and Josh Hau made a layup to cut a 12-point deficit to seven points with 42 seconds left in the game. Kittel would then go on a memorable scoring spurt to end his career by knocking down two free throws, scoring a layup and draining two deep 3-pointers to get the Falcons within three points with two seconds left in the game.
- Concordia Wisconsin fouled Tahron Harvey – the NACC's Player of the Year – who then made the second of two free throws with 0.7 seconds on the clock. The Falcons didn't get a final attempt at a miraculous game-tying triple and their season came to an end.
- Early on it appeared as if the Falcons could run away with the game, leading 20-5 just over five minutes into the contest. However, the Eagles would go on a 26-9 scoring run over the next nine minutes to go ahead by a field goal. At the intermission, Benedictine led by a slim 43-41 advantage.
- Concordia Wisconsin stayed within single digits until six minutes left in the game before Benedictine would extend its advantage to 14 points, 80-66, with 2:28 to play.
- Kittel (senior, Brillion, Wis.) ended with a career-high 31 points on 11-of-19 shooting (six 3-pointers) and eight assists.
- Jurss (sophomore, Sheboygan, Wis.) had 17 points, including five 3-pointers, while junior Josh Erickson (Manitowoc, Wis.) and sophomore Josh Hau (Slinger, Wis.) each had 14 points.
- Sophomore Andrew Fratzke (Winona, Minn.) added eight points, nine rebounds, three assists and two steals.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
- Benedictine would end with a 17-9 edge in points off turnovers and a 29-5 difference in bench production. The Falcons did outrebound the Eagles 39-36, but had just 15 assists on 35 field goals.
- Kittel's six 3-pointers made is tied for the 10th most in a game in program history and the Falcons 16 triples are tied for the fourth-most in a game. Kittel also set the program's NCAA-era record for 3-pointers (78) in a season.
- Fratzke set the program's single-season record for field goal percentage at 62.9 (139-of-221).
- Concordia Wisconsin set the NCAA-era season record for rebounds (1,114).
- Tahron Harvey posted a triple-double with 13 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists, to go along with three steals.
- Adam Reynolds scored 27 points and grabbed eight rebounds, while Brayden Olson tallied 21 points (five 3-pointers) off the bench.
- Michael Balszczyk added 18 points, five rebounds and four assists.