Thrice as nice: Northwest 3-peats in MIAA Tourney behind Welty, Kurth

Northwest sophomore forward Ryan Welty shoots on of his five made 3-pointers during Saturday’s 80-74 win against Washburn in the MIAA Men’s Basketball Championship at Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Missouri.

“Not one, not two, but three of them things,” he exclaims, celebrating Northwest’s third consecutive MIAA Men’s Basketball Championship with an 80-74 win against Washburn on Sunday at Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Missouri.

Kurth exploded for 13 of his 15 points in the opening half, including two 3-pointers in the final five minutes to help push the lead to as much as 15.

Along with Ryan Welty’s 16 points on 4-of-4 shooting from 3-point range, the No. 1-seeded Bearcats (26-3) overcame the early inside presence of No. 3-seeded Washburn’s Brady Skeens to lead for the final 33 minutes of the game.

Welty came off the bench and finished with 21 points on 5-of-7 shooting, including a perfect 6-for-6 mark from the charity stripe. The Parkville, Missouri, grad finished 12-for-15 on the tournament from deep.

Senior point guard Justin Pitts left the game with an apparent toe injury with 18:10 to play and didn’t return, finished with five assists and three points. Coach Ben McCollum called the injury a “concern” going forward as the No. 1 seed and host in Central Region play.

That’s when Chris-Ebou Ndow stepped up, scoring 14 of his 16 in the second half to go with 13 rebounds. Ndow finished 6-for-6 from the free-throw line in the final 41 seconds.

Washburn finished just 2-for-13 on 3-point attempts and made 61 percent of their free-throw attempts.

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