Wmilwaukee 69
Wrightst 63
Date of game: 3/11/2014

Milwaukee (20-13) at Wright State (20-13)

GAME NOTES: An automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament is at stake in the championship game of the Horizon League Tournament on Tuesday night, as the third-seeded Wright State Raiders play host to the fifth-seeded Milwaukee Panthers at the Nutter Center.

After dismissing Detroit (83-73) and Valparaiso (74-57) in the first and second rounds, respectively, Milwaukee made a statement in the semifinals by knocking off top-seeded Green Bay on the road, 73-66, in overtime. The Panthers, who are 20-13 overall this season, are trying for their first tournament title since 2006.

Wright State earned a first-round bye and followed that up by taking down Oakland in the second round (73-57) and Cleveland State in the semifinals (68-63). The Raiders, winners of six straight, are also 20-13 and get to host this matchup as the highest remaining seed. The squad's only previous Horizon League Tournament championship came in 1997.

The teams split the two-game regular-season series, with each side winning on its home floor. After 49 all-time meetings, Milwaukee holds the slimmest of margins, 25-24.

The Panthers coughed up a double-double second-half lead to Green Bay in the semifinal round but managed to force overtime with 13 seconds left in regulation on a Jordan Aaron layup, and they never trailed in the extra session as they captured the seven-point upset victory. They shot 44.8 percent from the floor and more impressively held Green Bay to a mere 35 percent shooting. Aaron paced all scorers with 28 points while knocking down 4-of-8 from 3-point range. Matt Tiby tallied a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds, Kyle Kelm and Austin Arians netted 14 and 12 points, respectively, and Steve McWhorter brought down 10 boards. Milwaukee has been inconsistent on the season, as it puts up nearly identical offensive production (.434 FG percentage, 71.0 ppg) as it allows to opponents (.435, 70.7 ppg). Aaron pours in a team-high 14.9 ppg, Kelm (12.4 ppg, 5.1 rpg) and Tiby (12.3 ppg, 6.6 rpg) have been solid in the frontcourt, while Arians (10.8 ppg) and McWhorter (8.1 ppg, 3.9 apg) round out the starting five.

The Raiders built up a six-point halftime lead over Cleveland State in the previous round and held on down the stretch to advance, as they outshot CSU from the field, 55 percent to 40 percent, and won the turnover battle, 13-10. Cole Darling knocked down all 10 of his free-throw attempts on his way to 21 points, Miles Dixon shot 6-of-8 from the field for 17 points and AJ Pacher logged 11 points and eight rebounds. Although Wright State shoots an impressive 45.6 percent from the field this season and connects on 73.7 percent of its free-throw tries, that production has only resulted in 67.5 ppg. Luckily its defensive effort has been top notch, as it yields just 62.1 ppg on 42.7 percent shooting while boasting a +2.9 turnover margin. Pacher (10.8 ppg, 5.0 rpg) is the only player to average in double figures, but Dixon, Darling, Jerran Young and JT Yoho all net between 8.3 and 8.9 ppg.

Even though Milwaukee has the more explosive offense and is riding high off an upset of the tournament favorite, Wright State has been outstanding on its home floor (13-2) and should be able to punch its ticket to the Big Dance behind the strength of its stout defense.

GAME NOTES: An automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament is at stake in the championship game of the Horizon League Tournament on Tuesday night, as the third-seeded Wright State Raiders play host to the fifth-seeded Milwaukee Panthers at the Nutter Center.

Fact Stats

FACTS & STATS: Site: Nutter Center (10,400) -- Dayton, Ohio. Television: ESPN. Home Record: Milwaukee 7-6, WSU 13-2. Away Record: Milwaukee 9-6, WSU 4-11. Neutral Record: Milwaukee 4-1, WSU 3-0. Conference Record: Milwaukee 7-9, WSU 10-6. Series Record: Milwaukee leads, 25-24.

Game Date and Time

Tuesday, March 11, 7 p.m. (ET)

Predicted Outcome

Wright State 68, Milwaukee 65

NASCAR News
Larson hospitalized after fainting at autograph session

Sprint Cup Series driver Kyle Larson was taken to a hospital for precautionary reasons after he fainted during an autograph session at Martinsville Speedway on Saturday.

Extra Points: Snyder and the Beltway radio wars

If contradiction was an Olympic sport, Chip Kelly would certainly be medal-worthy judging by his performance at the NFL's owners meeting but the Eagles coach might have to settle for silver because Daniel Snyder's critics will take the gold every time.

Cubs release Doubront

The Chicago Cubs granted pitcher Felix Doubront his unconditional release as the team continued to pair down its spring training roster on Saturday.

Stay Connected with WDEF News 12
 
Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.