IU Southeast Earns First Trip to Semifinals
Matt Bos-Media Coordinator
POINT LOOKOUT, Mo. (Box Score)- #11 Indiana University Southeast pulled away in the second half and defeated College of the Ozarks (Mo.) 75-60 in the quarterfinal round of the 2013 NAIA Division II Men's National Basketball Championship. The 2013 event is being held at the Keeter Gymnasium on the campus of College of the Ozarks.
IU Southeast becomes the third team in as many games to punch its first ever ticket into the national semifinals, joining top seeded William Penn (Iowa) and #2 Cardinal Stritch (Wis.).
The Grenadiers fell behind early as the host Bobcats, fueled by the capacity crowd, jumped out to an 11-5 lead after a three-pointer by Mike Wiebe. IU Southeast fought back and tied it at 21 and again at 23 before closing the first half on a 9-4 run to take a 37-30 advantage into the break.
IU Southeast threatened to blow the game open in the second half, going on an early 7-0 run to push the lead to as much as 17. The Bobcats made one final charge and trailed by just six (65-59) on a basket by Pete Leonard but the Grenadiers closed the game on a 10-1 run, holding Ozarks without a field goal for the final three minutes.
Matt Trimnell and Terence Billups both scored 20 points to lead the Grenadiers while Kegan Clark went for 12. Billups was a spark coming off the bench, making 8-of-10 field goal attempts. IU Southeast shot 52% for the game and 39% from the three-point arc.
College of the Ozarks was led by Wiebe with 18 points but struggled from the field, making 6-of-20 field goal attempts. Nathane Simniok scored 14 and Leonard added 11. The Bobcats end the season with a 23-13 overall record.
IU Southeast, now 30-4 on the year, advances to play #2 Cardinal Stritch in the second semifinal game on Monday, March 11 at 8:00pm. The 32-team, single elimination tournament concludes Tuesday, March 12, with the championship game to tip-off at 8 pm.