Championship Hopes Fizzle as Mavericks Fall to ND State

Championship Hopes Fizzle as Mavericks Fall to ND State
Ayo Akinwole drives toward the basket in the Summit League semifinals. MIKE SAUTTER/THE WORLD-HERALD

The Omaha men’s basketball team saw its championship hopes slip away Tuesday night, falling 73-63 to North Dakota State in the Summit League final at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center.

NDSU, which improves to 18-15 (9-7 Summit League), advances to the NCAA Tournament with the league’s automatic bid.

Matt Pile collected his team-leading ninth double-double of the year on 12 points and a game-best 14 rebounds with 6-of-12 shooting.

Mitch Hahn scored a team-high 16 points with seven rebounds, and Zach Jackson added 15 points with three 3-pointers. KJ Robinson finished with 11 points, five rebounds and a team-leading three assists.

Vinnie Shahid led all scorers with 22 points on 7-of-12 shooting. Tyson Ward had 15 points and a team-high seven boards, and Cameron Hunter hit 3-of-3 from long range en route to 12 points off the bench.