Mitchell Falls to No. 6 Swarthmore in NCAA First Round

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SWARTHMORE, Pa. -- The Mitchell College men's basketball team saw its season come to an end in the opening round of the NCAA Championship on Friday night, falling by a 90-73 final to sixth-ranked Swarthmore College at Tarble Pavilion.

Domenico Santiago paced the Mariners with 19 points, a game-high 13 rebounds and six assists in the final game of his collegiate career. Steffen Brunson added 15 points and Hasani Williams chipped in 13 points and nine boards for Mitchell, which ended the season with a record of 19-10.

All five Swarthmore starters scored in double figures, led by 20 points from Conor Harkins. The Garnet shot 56 percent from the field and connected on 12-for-23 from long range.

The Mariners fell behind early but clawed their way back into the game from beyond the arc. Landon Peabody kicked off a 9-2 Mitchell run with the first of three treys on the night. Brunson followed with back-to-back triples, the second of which gave the visitors their first lead of the game at 21-20. 

A lay up by Williams gave the Mariners their final lead of the night at 25-23 with 9:44 to go in the half. The Garnet then used a 9-0 run to pull back in front, although Mitchell kept it close until the final minute of the stanza. Swarthmore scored eight unanswered points during the final 1:13 of the half--including a buzzer-beating heave from 30 feet--to lead 47-36 at the break.

Despite Mitchell's best efforts, the Garnet led by double digits for the entirety of the second half. Peabody contributed a pair of threes midway through the half to trim the deficit to 11, but Harkins had the answer for Swarthmore. All but five of his points came in the second stanza, and the Garnet rode his hot hand to an NCAA first round win for the third straight season. 

Santiago ends his Mitchell career as the school leader in rebounds (1,135) and ranks third in total points (1,653). The three-time all-conference selection has also started more games (100) than any player in program history. 

Swarthmore (25-3 overall) advances to the second round and will face No. 12 MIT on Saturday at 7 p.m.