2011 NESCAC Men's Basketball Championship
Saturday, February 19 Saturday, February 26 Sunday, February 27
at No. 1 WIL 82, No. 8 BOW 62
at No. 1 WIL 79, No. 4 TRI 69
No. 2 MID 63, at No. 1 WIL 54
at No. 2 MID 61, No. 7 CONN 41
No. 2 MID 67, No. 3 AMH 61
at No. 3 AMH 77, No. 6 BAT 61
at No. 4 TRI 70, No. 5 TUF 47
Championship Seeding
Championship Preview
Championship Records 

Middlebury Wins Men's Basketball Championship, 63-54

Middlebury Wins Men's Basketball Championship, 63-54

Courtesy Middlebury/Williams Sports Information

Box Score

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. – Second-seeded Middlebury won its second NESCAC Men’s Basketball Championship on Sunday afternoon, as the Panthers posted a 63-54 win at Williams in the title game. In a rematch of last year’s final game – which the Ephs won – the Panthers went up early and never looked back.

The victory ties the Middlebury record for wins in a season, as the Panthers improve to 25-1, avenging their only loss of the season. The loss snaps a 34-game home winning streak for the Ephs, who fall to 25-2.

The Panthers jumped out to an early lead over the Ephs. At the 12:36 mark, Nolan Thompson hit a three-pointer from the right side and on the following possession had a long two from the top to put the Panther lead to eight at 16-8.

The lead grew to 10 on two occasions, before Williams went on a 12-0 run to take a 22-20 lead with 5:14 remaining on a three from James Wang. Middlebury answered with a 7-0 spurt, eventually taking a 32-27 lead into the intermission. Thompson finished with 15 points in the game, all of them coming in the opening half.

Middlebury extended its lead to nine before back-to-back threes from James Klemm and Harlan Dodson cut the lead to 36-33 at the 16:38 mark.

Just under two minutes later, Ryan Sharry backed down in the paint and finished to push the lead back to four after the Ephs finally cut it down to two. Hoping to give some momentum back to his Ephs, Whittington responded with a one-handed hoop before Joey Kizel took the ball the length of the court for an easy bucket. When Hayden Rooke-Ley drove to the hoop with 9:24 to play to make the score 46-44, Kizel responded yet again with a hoop of his own. After Sharry had a nice put-back off of a rebound to push the Panthers' lead to six, the Ephs were forced to take their third timeout of the game.

The lead was cut to four before a dunk from Andrew Locke and a three from Jake Wolfin gave the Panthers a 55-46 lead with 7:14 remaining. The Ephs made it a three-point game (57-54) at the 1:37 mark after a pair of free throws from Troy Whittington. Williams was forced to foul down the stretch, with the Panthers going 6-6 in the game's final 43 seconds to seal the win.

Thompson was one of four Panthers in double-figures, with Ryan Sharry adding 14 points and a dozen boards. Kizel finished with 13, while Wolfin added 11. Whittington netted 13 for the Ephs, while Wang added 12. The Middlebury defense held the Ephs to just 31.5% shooting from the field.

Quarterfinals - Saturday, Feb. 19 at Higher Seeds
at No. 1 Williams 82, No. 8 Bowdoin 62
at No. 2 Middlebury 61, No. 7 Connecticut College 41
at No. 3 Amherst 77, No. 6 Bates 61
at No. 4 Trinity 70, No. 5 Tufts 47

Semifinals - Saturday, February 26 at Williams
at No. 1 Williams 79, No. 4 Trinity 69
No. 2 Middlebury 67, vs. No. 3 Amherst 61

Championship - Sunday, February 27
No. 2 Middlebury 63, at No. 1 Williams 54


Quarterfinals - Saturday, February 19
3:00 p.m. at Higher Seeds
No. 8 at No. 1
No. 7 at No. 2
No. 6 at No. 3
No. 5 at No. 4

Semifinals - Saturday, February 26
at Highest Remaining Seed
2:00 p.m./4:00 p.m.

Championship - Sunday, February 27
12:00 p.m.

The top eight teams in the conference will qualify for the NESCAC Basketball Championship.  First round games will be conducted on Saturday, February 19, 2011 with the semifinals and championship games conducted on Saturday, February 26 and Sunday, February 27, respectively.  The tournament champion will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Championship. 

Seeding will be based on final conference standings of round robin play.  The top four seeds will host quarterfinal games with the number one seed drawing the number 8 seed, the 7th seed will play at the 2nd seed, the 6th seed will play at the 3rd seed, and the 5th seed will play at the 4th seed. Teams will be re-bracketed with the highest remaining seed after quarterfinal action hosting both the semifinal and final rounds.

Pairings will be announced Saturday, February 12.

Tie Breaking Procedures
Ties will be broken as follows:

Head-to-head result (if teams play each other more than once during the regular season, the game that appears on the league schedule will be the game that is counted).

If teams tied during the regular season, or there is a 3-way or more tie, the following tie breaking procedure will be used:

  • Best record among tying teams, against one another (head-to-head).
  • Most conference wins (in games that are part of the conference schedule and count toward league standings).
  • Comparison of results of conference games played against top 4 teams (including all teams at the 4th spot).
  • Comparison of results of conference games played against top 8 teams (including all teams at the 8th spot).
  • Comparison of results of conference games played against conference teams in rank order.
  • Comparisons shall be made one team at a time starting with the highest ranked team.
  • If the tie remains after comparing results against the highest ranked team, the results against the next team in rank order shall be used. This process is continued until a winner is determined.
  • Coin flip (or similar random action involving all tied teams).

Note: In case of ties among three or more schools, the criteria above will be applied in order until a team is (or teams are) separated.  At that point, the process begins anew (returning to the first criteria) with the remaining teams.  The process is continued until the tie is eventually broken.  In cases where only a random action will break the tie of three or more teams, the random action will be applied to all teams involved in the tie.  For example, if three teams are tied and only a random action (pulling names out of a hat) will break the tie, each name will be pulled and seeded in order of being pulled.  Also, in the event that there are two (or more) groups of teams tied at different spots in the standings and the only criteria left that can be used to break those ties is a coin flip/random action, the coin flip/random action used to break the tie of one group (to put teams in rank order) will not affect the tie breaking procedures of the other group(s) of tied teams.