New faces headed to Salem

More news about: Cabrini | Illinois Wesleyan | MIT | UW-Whitewater

Jamie Karraker hit five of his 10 three-pointer shots in MIT's victory.
Photo by Tom Gearty, MIT

Salem will see some new faces as Cabrini and MIT punched their programs' first tickets to the national semifinals ever. UW-Whitewater heads to the Final Four for the first time since 1989 and unranked Illinois Wesleyan completed its run to the Final Four.

MIT defeated Franklin and Marshall 69-54 as the Engineers finished the first half and started the second on fire. The Engineers scored the final six points of the first half to go into the locker up seven on the Diplomats. MIT stayed hot to start the second half and pushed the lead to 43-30. The Diplomats knocked the lead down to singl digits a couple times, but MIT held them at arm's length to secure the victory. MIT shot 56 percent from three (9-for-16) and outrebounded Franklin and Marshall by 12.

MIT is just the second team currently in the NEWMAC to reach the national semifinals and the first in 25 years. Clark finished as the national runner-up in 1984 and 1987.

Cabrini ended Cinderella Scranton's run in Vermont where the Cavaliers defeated the Royals 78-58. Cabrini seized control with a 17-2 run during the first half. The Cavaliers were paced by their postseason dymanic duo. Cory Lemons scored 20 points in 36 minutes. Aaron Walton-Moss, who joined the team midseason, had 17 points and 10 rebounds off the bench. Walton-Moss has averaged 19 points and 14 rebounds over the last five games.

Cabrini is the second program from the Colonial States Athletic Conference to advance to the national semifinals. Alvernia represented the conference in 1997 when it was called the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference.

Illinois Wesleyan, which is unranked but no stranger to the national semifinals, is headed back there for the fifth time in program history. The Titans rolled past Wittenberg 70-49 thanks to a 40-point second half and stellar defense. Illinois Wesleyan held the Tigers to 29 percent shooting (15-for-52) and outscored them in the paint 30-12.

UW-Whitewater completes the national semifinal field. The Warhawks topped Virginia Wesleyan 76-62 to reach the semifinals for the third time in program history, but the first since 1989. After the Marlins scored the game's first bucket, the Warhawks took over by scoring the next 10 points and went to half ahead 36-26. The second half followed the same pattern: the Marlins scored first and the Warhawks scored often. Chris Davis' layup on UW-Whitewater's first possession of the second half put them ahead by double digits to stay. Davis finished with 33 points in 29 minutes while Cody Odegaard added 17.