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Wright State, Northern Kentucky meet in Horizon League Championship

After knocking off the top two seeds in the semifinals, Wright State and Northern Kentucky clash for the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament

Syndication: The Enquirer
Chris Brandon ranked sixth in the Horizon League in rebounding and is a big reason why the Norse had the best defense in the conference.
Sam Greene/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

Matchup: No. 4 Wright State (15-7 Horizon, 20-13 overall) vs. No. 3 Northern Kentucky (14-6 Horizon, 20-11 overall)

Location: Indiana Farmers Coliseum, Indianapolis

Time: 7 p.m. ET

TV: ESPN

DraftKings line: Northern Kentucky -1, O/U 135

INDIANAPOLIS – Wright State and Northern Kentucky beat the Horizon League’s top two teams to set up a meeting for the conference crown. Wright State defeated No. 1 Cleveland State 82-67 Monday. Northern Kentucky topped second-seeded Purdue Fort Wayne 57-43.

Wright State raced out to a 22-10 lead over the defending conference champs. The Vikings pulled to within seven, but the Raiders bumped the lead back to double figures to secure their spot in the title game.

Two Raiders posted double-doubles. Grant Basile tallied a game-high 27 points and 11 rebounds. Tanner Holden registered 12 points and 10 boards.

In Northern Kentucky’s win, the Norse limited the Mastodons to a season-low 43 points. It led by as much as 21 and limited Purdue Fort Wayne to 29% shooting for the game.

Marques Warrick registered a game-high 19 points to go along with five rebounds and three assists.

Defense has been the strength of Northern Kentucky, who has won 14 of its last 16 games. It boasted a league-best scoring defense by yielding 64.9 points per game. Over the last five contests, the Norse has allowed 58.6 points.

NKU won both meetings in the regular season. The Norse prevailed by 10 at home in late January and won 75-71 at Wright State on Feb. 13.

Holden was third in the conference in scoring at 19.9 points per game. Basile was right behind him at 18.5. He ranked second in rebounding at 8.7 per contest. The forward led the league with 1.6 blocks per contest.

Warrick paced Northern Kentucky with 16.4 points per game, which ranked sixth in the Horizon League. Adrian Nelson and Chris Brandon were fifth and sixth in league in rebounding with about 7.5 boards per contest.

The two clubs met in the 2019 title game, which Northern Kentucky won. This meeting is just the third time these two have met in the Horizon League tournament.