IWU  Athletic News
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Men's Basketball - Mon, Mar. 13, 2017

POINT LOOKOUT, Mo. -- Two No. 1 seeds are ready to clash this evening in Point Lookout, Missouri as Indiana Wesleyan University and Union (Ky.) vie for a spot in the championship game of the 2017 NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball National Championship.

Both No. 1 seeds have had to survive and win games in the final seconds to reach this point. Union defeated No. 4 College of Idaho 83-82 on a bucket with 13 seconds to play in the Round of 16. Indiana Wesleyan hit free throws with two seconds remaining to beat No. 4 Northwestern (Iowa) in the Round of 16 and did it again vs. No. 6 Tabor (Kan.) in the quarterfinals.

After a close call in the Round of 16, Union made a statement in the quarterfinals and blitzed No. 3 Trinity International (Ill.) 98-60 on Saturday. Five Bulldogs reached double figures in the win and the team sank 13 3-pointers in the 38 point blowout victory.

Union is the top overall seed of the tournament and makes its first appearance in the Fab Four. The U is 33-3 this season and qualified as the Appalachian Athletic Conference champion with a 20-0 record.

The athletic squad showcases seven players that score 7.4 points or more this season and they rank seventh in Points per Game (90.1) and third in Scoring Margin (+18.3). Union can be found scattered throughout the national rankings as they are top-10 in 12 team categories and six individual categories.

The Bulldogs lead the nation in Total Steals (370) and Total Rebound Offense (1,545). Union is also top-10 in Steals per Game (10.3), Total Rebound Margin (+8.8), Total Rebounds per Game (42.9), Total Assist (604), and Blocks per Game (4.2).

Gerrard Newby and Paul Stone form a dynamic 1-2 scoring threat for Union as they combine for 38.6 points per game. Newby averages 20.8 points, 9.7 rebounds, 1.8 steals, and 1.4 blocks while shooting 52-percent from the field. Newby has made 94 3-pointers and is an 82-percent free throw shooter. Stone adds 17.8 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 1.3 steals while he shoots 52-percent from the field as well. Stone gets to the line more than any other Bulldog with 213 free throw attempts. Tyrone Sherman runs the point position and averages 13.7 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 6.0 assists. He is fourth in the country in Total Steals (71), fifth in Total Assists (216), and seventh in Assists per Game (6.0).

Indiana Wesleyan and Union play the first of the two semifinal games with a 7 p.m. ET tip-off. No. 1 Cornerstone (Mich.) and No. 6 Bellevue (Neb.) follow at 9 p.m. ET. The Indiana Wesleyan game can be seen on television in Grant County over the air on Channel 51 or on Spectrum Cable on Channel 23.

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