Sun, Jul. 15, 2012 - [WPU]
The #4 story from 2011-2012 witnessed the William Penn men's basketball team accepting some help from a fierce rival to return to the sport's biggest stage.
In late February, following a successful Midwest Collegiate Conference regular season (12-6), the Statesmen cagers positioned themselves well as the second seed for the league tournament.
The high seeding did not provide any security, however, as the navy and gold were knocked off by rival Grand View.
William Penn's flame was not extinguished, though, as the team still had a chance to earn a bid to nationals if top seed St. Ambrose matched its regular crown with a tourney title. With ten teams competing in the MCC, the NAIA would be handing out two automatic qualifications this year.
Gathering in a pair of Penn Activity Center classrooms on the evening of Sunday, February 26, Statesmen players and fans did the unthinkable--they cheered for the Fighting Bees in the championship game!
In a blowout, St. Ambrose defeated Grand View in the final and punched William Penn's ticket for Point Lookout, Mo., its first trip to nationals in four years.
The Statesmen (17-15, 12-6 MCC) knew they would have a tough road to hoe, and drew the #3 team in the land, Davenport (Mich.), in the first round. A valiant effort was given, but William Penn came up just short in an 85-81 loss. Second-Team All-American senior Alan Douglas put an exclamation point on his two-year career, scoring his 1,000th point in the final seconds of the loss.