SEWARD, Nebraska- Concordia Wisconsin completed a tremendous second half comeback to defeat Concordia Nebraska 64-62 this evening and win the CIT Championship in thrilling fashion.
The hosts actually missed a pair of game-tying efforts in the frantic closing seconds after senior Mark Pace (Milwaukee, Wis.) had brought the Falcons back from almost certain defeat.
The Falcons were an icy 7-21 from the floor during a frustrating first half. Senior Brian Jackson was the only CUW player having success on the offensive end, scoring 11 of Concordia Wisconsin's 24 points prior to the break.
Host CUNE (6-14) came out full of energy after breaking a long losing streak the night before against Concordia Chicago. The Cougars were 13 of 27 from the floor including four of eight on some difficult long range attempts during the intial twenty minutes and grabbed a 31-24 lead.
Shawn Cassidy's team depth has worn many teams down in the second half, but the Nebraskans were on a collective mission and actually increased their cushion to as much as 41-28 before CUW (13-7) began their surge over the final twelve minutes.
The scrambling Falcons got within 46-42 with 9:30 left in regulation and finally took the lead with less than two minutes remaining via a Mark Pace rampage that included nine consecutive points by the offesnively-talented forward who finished with 13. Tournament MVP Brian Jackson (Sr./ Carol Stream, Ill.) finished with 14.
Coach Shawn Cassidy loved the result AND the atmosphere. "Our fans were terrific all weekend and that gave us plenty of motivation in a 'hostile' environment."
Cassidy's cagers swing back into conference action Tuesday when they host Edgewood College.