Late basket tips UW-Stevens Point
Nicolai scores with 4 seconds remaining to lead St. Thomas
ROCK ISLAND, Ill. – UW-Stevens Point tied the game with 17 seconds remaining but was unable to hold the Tommies of St. Thomas University on their next possession and fell in the NCAA Division III Sweet 16 by a 66-64 margin on Friday evening on the campus of Augustana (Ill.) College.
Jerrel Harris gave the Pointers a three-point lead with a jumper with 9:09 remaining in the first half to cap a 7-2 run. The Tommies then put together a 19-6 run during the next seven-plus minutes to take a 10-point lead. Harris hit two jumpers and Louis Hurd added one of his own and the Pointers cut the lead to five going into the half.
Harris opened the second half with a 3-pointer but St. Thomas went on a 14-6 run to push their lead back to 10 points and a jumper by Tyler Nicolai pushed the lead to a game-high 11 point advantage for the Tommies.
Scott Hoelzel connected on a jumper with 2:19 remaining to bring the game back to a three-point contest. Both teams were held scoreless over the next 2:02 until Hurd connected with a 3-pointer with 17 seconds left in the game.
The Pointers were unable to hold off the Tommies in the final seconds as Nicolai knocked down a jumper with four seconds left to take a two-point cushion. Point was unable to get a shot off with two seconds remaining and fell by two points to end the season.
Hurd led the team in scoring with 19 points and six rebounds in his final game as a Pointer. Hoelzel scored 16 on 8 of 8 shooting while Harris added 15 with four rebounds.
Hurd finished his Pointer career with 1,288 points, finishing 15th on the all-time scoring list.
Alex Healy led the Tommies with 19 points while Tommy Hannon (14) and Nicolai (10) also scored in double figures.
UW-Stevens Point (26-4) ended its season and said farewell to a senior class of Hurd, Hoelzel, Nick Krull and Vinny Ritchay, who posted a 102-20 record during the past four years.