St. Norbert Claims MWC Title Outright With Win at Illinois College

From Sports Information Director, February 16, 2013 | Men's Basketball
by Dan Lukes, dan.lukes@snc.edu, (920) 403-4077

JACKSONVILLE, Ill. - St. Norbert College won the Midwest Conference men's basketball championship for the third time in four years with a 70-68 win over Illinois College at Bruner Center. The triumph, along with Lawrence University's 114-106 overtime win over Grinnell College, gave the Green Knights the outright league title.

St. Norbert (18-5, 15-3 MWC) will face Ripon College at 7 p.m. Friday in the MWC Tournament at Schuldes Sports Center in De Pere. Grinnell will face Carroll University in the other semifinal at 5 p.m. Friday. The championship is set for 3 p.m. Saturday.

The Green Knights survived the longest road trip in the Midwest Conference to pull out a tense win. St. Norbert led the entire second half, but saw its lead whittle down to one point on three occasions in the final 20 minutes. Andrew Schwoerer's hoop with 1:19 left put St. Norbert ahead 65-62, and Brandon Gries' two free throws with 53 seconds left gave the Green Knights some breathing room. A Gries free throw with 8 seconds left gave St. Norbert a 70-66 lead and sealed the win.

The first half featured seven ties before St. Norbert took a 38-32 halftime lead. The Green Knights led by nine points twice in the second half, the last time at 51-42 with 14:36 to go.

Schwoerer led St. Norbert with 20 points, canning 10 of 15 field-goal attempts. Gries added 19 points, while Paul Appleton added nine points. St. Norbert shot 50 percent from the floor, making 28 of 56 field goals.

Illinois College (9-14, 6-12) was led by 13 points from Nathan Kohler. The Blueboys committed only six turnovers