CHAMPAIGN, IL – The University of Alabama has claimed both the men’s and women’s national championships at the 2019 Toyota National Intercollegiate Wheelchair Basketball Tournament, the first time in Alabama program history both titles were captured in the same year. This is the sixth national title for the Crimson Tide women (2009, 2010, 2011, 2015, 2017, 2019); third title in the last five years and three more titles then any other women’s team/program in the Intercollegiate Division. The Alabama men’s team retained the title after having been crowned national champions in 2018. The men’s team for Alabama has won three national championships in the Intercollegiate Division (2013, 2018, 2019).
This game was a repeat of the matchup in last year’s national championship game, in which the University of Alabama was crowned 2018 NWBA Intercollegiate Men’s National Champions with a 69-65 defeat of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. However, the UWW Warhawks entered this game with a lot of momentum blowing past opponents in the preliminary rounds scoring 105 and 97 points in those games. The Crimson Tide also looked strong entering the game with a 26-5 record and bolstering two decisive wins in the tourney over UTA-Arlington Movin’ Mavs and Southwest Minnesota State University Mustangs.
The offensive approach to this game for each team was very different, the Crimson Tide focused on a low post game and the Warhawks on their perimeter shooting. The advantage was held by Bama at half with a three-point margin, up 37-34.
The UW-Whitewater Warhawks looked to the hot hand of Dylan Fischbach of Vermillion, SD, having averaged 35.5 points, 12 rebounds and 18.5 assist in the previous two games. Fischbach started the game strong behind the arc but “cooled” to a still impressive 45.8% on 24 shots on three-pointers.
The transition offense and stellar shooting performance by the Crimson Tide were determining factors in this contest. Dequel Robinson of Mobile, AL, was able to account for +10 points from fast break opportunities for the Crimson Tide. The transition offense for Bama helped to create open layups or opportunities at the foul line, the Crimson Tide visited the charity stripe a staggering 27 times in the game. The overall shooting performance for Alabama was consistent throughout the game with a field goal percentage of 58.2% for the game, shooting 56.7% in the first half and 60% in the second half.
Michael AuPrince of Sydney, Australia, scored 27 points, snared 17 rebounds and accounted for six assists. The Men’s National Championship Player of the Game was Dequel Robinson, finishing the game with 28 points, 9 rebounds and 14 assists.
The Alabama Men finished the Season 27-5 Overall. Roll Tide!