MILWAUKEE, Wis. (naccsports.org) --- Milwaukee School of Engineering and Concordia University Wisconsin each registered victories in their regular-season finales Saturday afternoon, keeping the programs level atop the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference (NACC) men's basketball standings and giving each a share of the 2019 NACC men's basketball title.
Both squads earned first-round byes for the upcoming NACC tournament, with MSOE (21-4, 16-4 NACC) earning the top seed by virtue of a tiebreaker. As the top seed, the Raiders will host the semifinals and finals next Saturday and Sunday at Edgar Hotchkin Arena in Milwaukee.
Aurora University (3), Illinois Institute of Technology (4), Rockford University (5) and Edgewood College (6) round out the six-team field and will participate in first-round NACC Tournament games Wednesday, Feb. 20.
The higher remaining seed after the first round will face CUW at 3:30 p.m. Saturday in the first semifinal of the day, while MSOE takes on the lower remaining seed in the late game at 5:45 p.m.
The championship game is slated for 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24. The winner earns the NACC's automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Men's Basketball Championship.
MSOE put the wraps on its first league title since 1981-82 with an 87-45 win over Marian Saturday. The Raiders will be making their 11th appearance in the NACC tournament, having reached the title game as a No. 6 seed in 2016.
The title share was also the first in the NACC for CUW (18-7, 16-4 NACC), which does have one tourney title to its credit (2015). The Falcons will also be making their 11th appearance, sporting a 9-9 mark in 10 previous trips.
Aurora (14-11, 12-8 NACC) has qualified for the tournament in each year of the NACC's existance - the only men's program with that distinction - and has five tournament crowns to go with seven regular-season titles.
NACC newcomer Illinois Tech (14-11, 11-9 NACC) locked up a home first-round tournament game with a 70-65 win over Rockford (12-13, 11-9 NACC) Saturday afternoon. Their reward? Another home game against the Regents Wednedsday night. Rockford is in the field for the sixth time overall - and the first time since 2013 when the tournament was still an eight-team affair.
Edgewood (10-15, 10-10 NACC) makes it back-to-back appearances in the NACC Tournament and 10 overall by qualifying in 2019. The Eagles won the 2012 NACC title and tournament as a No. 3 seed after finishing runner-up in the North Division during the regular season.
NACC Men's Basketball Tournament
#1 MSOE (16-4)
#2 Concordia Wisconsin (16-4)
#3 Aurora (12-8)
#4 Illinois Tech (11-9)
#5 Rockford (11-9)
#6 Edgewood (10-10)
First Round - Wednesday, Feb. 20 - campus sites
#6 Edgewood at #3 Aurora, 7 p.m.
#5 Rockford at #4 Illinois Tech, 7 p.m.
Semifinals - Saturday, Feb. 23 - at Milwaukee, Wis. (MSOE)
Higher remaining seed (3,4,5) vs. #2 Concordia Wisconsin, 3:30 p.m.
Lower remaining seed (4,5,6) at #1 MSOE, 5:45 p.m.
Championship - Sunday, Feb. 24 - at Milwaukee, Wis. (MSOE)
Semifinal winners, 3 p.m.