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Dillard Hits Late Free Throws to Down Westmont, 74-71

Dillard - 2018 tournament

Story By Eric Montgomery | Media Coordinator
Photos courtesy of
Referee Photo

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – (Box Score) No. 5-seeded Dillard (La.) hit three of four free throws in the final minute to claim a 74-71 victory over fourth-seeded Westmont (Calif.) and advance to the second round of the 81st Annual NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball National Championship, Wednesday evening at Municipal Auditorium. The Bleu Devils will play No. 1-seeded LSU Shreveport (La.), a 72-63 winner over Harris-Stowe State (Mo.), on Friday, March 16 at 10:45 a.m. CST

NOTES

  • Dillard improved its season record to 21-9
  • Westmont ends its season with a record of 24-8

STANDOUT PERFORMERS

  • Jorori Coleman and Kristopher Allmon shared team-high scoring honors for Dillard with 19 points, combining to hit 15 of 30 from the field
  • Joshua Simmons chipped in with 14 points and nine rebounds for the Bleu Devils
  • Gerald Karczewski recorded 19 points to lead the way for Westmont to go along with five assists and three rebounds
  • Olisa Nwachie and David Gunn each finished with 16 points for the Warriors, with Owachie claiming nine rebounds

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • The two teams played to a stalemate until the 1:21 mark of the first half when Allmon and Coleman each hit three-point shots before Karczewski scored in the paint to finish the half with Dillard leading 31-27
  • Both teams struggled from the field in the opening stanza, each shooting under 40 percent and combining to commit 17 turnovers
  • Dillard scored the first six points of the second half to lead by 10, but Westmont tied the game up just before the midway point of the second half, the first of five ties in the final frame
  • Following a long jumper by Gunn to level the teams at 71-71 with 55 seconds left, Allmon hit two free throws with 47 seconds to play
  • Quinton Jackson added two more from the charity stripe with 18 seconds remaining after a miss by Gunn, and Westmont missed two three-point attempts in the final moments

HOW THEY SAW IT

  • Dillard head coach Mike Newell – “I thought our kids really did a great job and kept their composure. Westmont is a very well-coached team. It is hard to speed them up. They run their stuff very well and they get good shots, but I thought we did a great job. In the second half down the stretch during the last five to six minutes, we made some big shots and made some free throws.”
  • Westmont head coach John Moore – “I thought we fought hard and did most of what we wanted to do. We gave ourselves many chances to finish the game. We had the right guys shooting the shots. We just missed a couple bunnies there late. We needed to get that lead that we had in the first half.”

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

  • After combining to convert a combined 9 of 25 three-point shots in the first half, the teams each hit just one long-range shot in the second half on a combined 11 attempts
  • Dillard made the most of its 16 offensive rebounds, turning them into 25 second chance points while limiting Westmont to just eight on 14 offensive boards

GAME NOTES:
Dillard
Dillard won a first round game for the third-straight national championship and fourth time overall, winning in 2003 before a 13-year gap between appearances and its current three-year run … The Bleu Devils improved to 5-7 overall all-time in the national championship, playing its third game decided by exactly three points … Dillard squared off with a team from the Golden State Athletic Conference in the first round for the second time in three seasons at the national championship, downing Hope International (Calif.), 111-91, in 2016.

Westmont
Westmont fell to 11-9 all-time in the first round of the national championship and 21-20 overall in the program’s 20th all-time appearance … The Warriors allowed right at its season average of 74.1 points per game, but entered the championship scoring 81.8 points per game … Westmont head coach John Moore entered the 2017-18 season in sixth place on the NAIA Division I Active Coaches’ Wins List with 569 in 29 seasons

Championship Information

NAIA DI Men's Basketball Championship
Sports Rules - Basketball DI (M)
Official Merchandise-DIMBB