Courier sports staff
POINT LOOKOUT, Mo. —
Top-ranked William Penn’s incredible season ended in disappointment Tuesday, as the Statesmen closed their momentous season with a 73-59 loss to No. 2 seed Cardinal Stritch (Wisc.) in the NAIA Division II Championship.
Brandon Beasley poured in a team-high 23 points for Wiliam Penn (34-2) and Keith Steffeck added 12. Beasley and Blake Walker, who finished with seven points; grabbed eight rebounds each for the Statesmen. William Penn’s Kevin Fay pumped in seven points and Taylor Stoutner added six.
Darren Moore led the Wolves (35-3) with 21 points on 8-15 shooting, Mike Simpson compiled 13 points and Jeremy D’Amico added 12.
Cardinal Stritch nursed a slim 39-36 edge at the half. The Wolves extended their lead to 10 with less than ten minutes left, but the Statesmen managed to trim their lead down to 63-57 with 2:14 left. Cardinal Stritch, however, put the kibosh on William Penn’s comeback attempt and went on to pick up a double-digit victory.
The outcome was influenced from a deficit in foul shooting between the two teams. The Wolves took 25 shots from the charity stripe, while William Penn only took eight foul shots. The Statesmen had a slim rebounding edge in the contest, as they grabbed 35 rebounds to the Wolves 33. Cardinal Stritch’s bench outscored William Penn 17-11 and the Wolves outscored the Statesmen in the paint 32-24.