Men’s Basketball Downs Rockford, Will Host NACC First Round Matchup Wednesday

CHICAGO—The Illinois Tech men’s basketball team needed a win, a Concordia-Wisconsin win, and an Aurora win on Saturday to earn the fourth seed in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference (NACC) Tournament and host a first-round matchup. All three boxes were checked for Tech, as the Scarlet Hawks (14-11, 11-9 NACC) took care of the Regents (12-13, 11-9 NACC) 70-65 at the Keating Sports Center on Senior Day.

How It Happened

  • For the second game in the row, the Scarlet Hawks started the game on fire, scoring on five of the team’s first six possessions to take a 14-6 early lead.
  • Rockford, however, proved to be tough all contest long, proceeding to hold the Scarlet Hawks scoreless over the next three minutes and tie the score at 14-14.
  • Neither team led by more than one possession for the rest of the first half until Maine West produce Milos Dugalic drained a three-pointer with four seconds remaining. Tech led 37-32 at halftime.
  • Due to Tech turnovers and great aggressiveness from RU’s Will Adams, the Regents reeled the Hawks back in. Slowly chipping away as the half went on, Rockford took its first lead of the second half on a Talon Hardin layup after a Kivontay Shaw steal.
  • Rockford’s lead reached as high as 57-51 with 6:08 left. Tech began to ran its offense through Max Hisatake, going to him on two straight possessions down the stretch to pull to within in one. Just like in the first half, Dugalic then hit a key three-pointer, giving Tech a 64-62 lead at the 1:54 mark.
  • There was no scoring over the next minute until Hisatake split a pair of free throws with 46 seconds remaining. Rockford scored just once more the rest of the way, as Jake Bruns drained five of six free throw attempts for the Scarlet Hawks over the last minute.

Scarlet Hawk Standouts

  • For the second straight game, the Scarlet Hawks had five players score in double-figures. Bruns led the team with 15 points.
  • Hisatake was a beast on both ends of the floor. He posted a double-double (10 points, 10 rebounds) with three steals and four blocks.
  • Otis Reale was efficient, scoring 14 points on 7-of-11 shooting with four assists.
  • Dugalic had 11 points in fifteen minutes, draining three three-pointers.
  • Jake Digiorgio also posted 10 points with five rebounds, three steals, and two blocks.

Stats to Know

  • Tech shot 48.1% while holding the Regents to 38.7%.
  • Turnovers aided the Regents, as Tech committed 19 to RU’s 11.
  • The Scarlet Hawks outrebounded the Regents 35-30.

Up Next

  • A rematch is in place on Wednesday night, as the Scarlet Hawks will host Rockford, who earned the tournament’s fifth seed. The matchup will be in the Keating Sports Center at 7 p.m. Live audio, video, and stats will be available, with the live audio powered by Illinois Media School.