Conference playoff champions St. Olaf and Northwestern (Roseville) received automatic berths and St. Thomas an at-large berth when the 62-team NCAA Division III men’s basketball tournament field was announced Monday.
St. Thomas (24-3), which lost at home to St. Olaf 72-66 in Sunday’s MIAC tournament championship game, will play host to the opening two rounds, facing Central (Iowa) on Friday. The winner of that game will face the winner of the game between Elmhurst (21-6) and Wisconsin-Oshkosh (18-9) on Saturday.
St. Olaf (18-9), which finished second to the Tommies for the MIAC regular-season title, will face North Central (Ill.) on Friday in De Pere, Wis. The other game in that bracket has UMAC tournament champion Northwestern (22-5) — playing in its sixth consecutive NCAA tournament — facing host St. Norbert (23-2). Both St. Olaf and Northwestern advanced to the round of 16 a year ago.
UST women face Loras
Conference tournament champion St. Thomas was the only MIAC women’s team to be invited to the 64-team NCAA tournament. The Tommies (24-3) will face Loras of Iowa (19-8) on Friday in the opening round at Wisconsin-River Falls.
The winner of that game will face the winner of the second game between UW-River Falls (22-5) and Wheaton (22-5).
• The Northwestern (Roseville) women’s team, which is 21-6 after losing in the UMAC final to Wisconsin-Superior on Saturday, will play host to NAIA member Judson (15-15) on Saturday, with the winner advancing to the National Christian College Athletic Association national tournament.