DANVILLE, Ky - Ohio Wesleyan ends record setting year for Centre, beating the Colonels in the second round of the NCAA Division III Men's Basketball Championship 82-65. The game was played in front of a standing room only crowd of 1,200 on Centre's Campus on Saturday, March 8.
Centre College began the first half on a 10-0 run and looked like they had everything well in control before Ohio Wesleyan finally scored their first points at the 16:38 mark. Centre and Ohio Wesleyan would continue to trade points until the Battling Bishops of Ohio Wesleyan took the lead 24-22 at the 7:50 mark off a three pointer by Brian Cafarella. The lead would change twice before Ohio Wesleyan would take the final lead of the half and head in to the locker room up 38-35.
Both teams shot well during the first half with Centre holding a small edge shooting 50% from the field while the Bishops shot 44.8% from the field. There was a similar margin in favor of Centre from behind the three-point arc as the Colonels shot 41.7% from long range and Ohio Wesleyan was 37.5% from deep.
The major statistical difference in the first half was the Battling Bishops ability to crash the boards; pulling down 18 total rebounds compared to 12 for Centre.
Ohio Wesleyan would carry over their momentum from the first half and never relinquish the lead back to host Centre College. The Battling Bishops continued their domination of the boards by grabbing 34 total rebounds compared to 27 for Centre.
Ohio Wesleyan was also able to increase their overall shooting percentage to 60.9% and their three point accuracy went up to 50% in the second half. Centre was unable to maintain their strong shooting from the first half and dropped down to 36.7% overall from the field and just 26.7% from behind the arc.
Ohio Wesleyan was lead offensively by junior Kyle Holiday who had 24 points and three assists. Following closely behind him were seniors Dustin Rudegeair and Brian Cafarella who each had 17 points while fellow senior Jesse Jean added 16 more points.
The Centre College Colonels also had four players in double digit figures. With senior Thomas Britt and sophomore Danny Noll both adding 15 points to the effort and Senior Matt Nestheide and junior T.C. Thomason contributing 10 points each.
Centre College ends the 2008 season with an overall record of 26-3 while Ohio Wesleyan advances to the sweet sixteen of the NCAA Championship and improves their record to 22-7.