SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- The Oregon Tech men's basketball season ended early Wednesday morning after Briar Cliff (IA) topped them 80-70 in the NAIA first-round match up. The Owl's had a one-point lead with three minutes to play, but a 15-4 Briar Cliff run to close out the game spelled disaster as they pulled away.
Briar Cliff was paced by Jay Wolfe who scored a game-high 23 points, going 11-for-11 from the free-throw line. Three others scored in double figures for Briar Cliff: Erich Erdman with 16, Jackson Lamb with 14, and Blake Wiltgen with 11.
The free-throw edge for Briar Cliff ended up being the difference. They attempted 37 free throws compared to Oregon Tech's 14. On top of that, they made 32 of 37 attempts.
Co-Cascade Collegiate Conference Player of the Year Mitch Fink led the way for the Owls with 17 points. Tyler Hieb contributed 14 points and 5 boards.
Oregon Tech's overall record finishes at 22-11 and the future is bright for the Owls. They return nine players from this year's team, only losing Ephraim Church and Andrew Weber.