Well, after a stand-out season Bellarmine has made it to the men’s division II NCAA basketball tournament championship, which tips off in the Mass Mutual center in Springfield, Massachusetts on Saturday at 1 on CBS.
Looking for their first NCAA championship Bellarmine goes into the final contest of the season with an intensity that granted them a record of 32-2 in the regular season.
Across the court from the Knights are Cinderella team, (7) Brigham Young-Hawaii, which upset undefeated (1) West Liberty on Thursday in the final four. The Seasiders of BYU-Hawaii come out of the West region, and head into Saturday’s game with a head full of steam, no doubt generated from their tournament long underdog status.
Bellarmine defeated (1) Minnesota State Mankato in a tight 81-74 game to get to the championship game. Bellarmine entered the tournament with a ranking of number two in the country behind only that West Liberty team defeated by their championship opponent. Known for their well-roundedness the Knights have proven effective on both sides of the court, averaging 80 points a game and led by the experienced play of their five seniors led by All-American Jeremy Kendle.
If the Knights are able to pull out a victory in this game it will mark the first time that a Kentucky-based team were able to claim the crown since 2001 when Kentucky Wesleyan did it. Despite being rivals of sorts the friendly competition between BU and KW, will be sure to mean that Kentucky Wesleyan will be tuning into CBS Saturday afternoon.
This game is really the only deciding factor between these two quality teams though, so let the games begin.
Photo: Couresty P.Crush- Bellarmine Athletics