Bucknell wins Patriot League’s NCAA bid
LEWISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Stephen Brown scored 22 points and reserve Nate Sestina added 16 as Bucknell won its second straight Patriot League Tournament championship with an 83-54 victory over Colgate on Wednesday night.
The top-seeded Bison (25-9) head to the NCAA Tournament for the eighth time in program history and sixth time as the Patriot League representative. Four of those six titles have come in the last eight years.
The second-seeded Raiders (19-13) lost to Bucknell for the third time this season. Colgate was playing in the league championship game for the first time in 10 years and gunning for its first league championship since 1996.
The Bison finish the year with a 15-1 record at home. They have won 18 of 19 entering the NCAA Tournament.
Brown, who made five 3-pointers, was named tournament MVP. Bucknell shot 46 percent from beyond the arc (13-for-28).
Will Rayman, Colgate’s leading scorer coming in and a second-team all-Patriot League pick, scored 17 points. Jordan Burns added 12 for the Raiders.
Nana Foulland had 12 points for the Bison.
Bucknell tied Holy Cross for most Patriot League Tournament titles in league history and could make a case for currently being the premier program in the conference. The Bison are the first team to win back-to-back tournament titles twice (2005-06).
Colgate, which squandered an eight-point lead in the final 21 seconds in its last visit to Bucknell on Feb. 12, didn’t have enough firepower for the Bison this season. With three starters back next season - including Rayman - they may yet successfully challenge the Bison for league supremacy.
Bucknell will find out Sunday where it’s headed for in the NCAA Tournament.
Colgate has an outside shot at an NIT or CBI berth.