Cardinal Stritch University begins defense of its NAIA Division 2 National
Championship today in Branson, Missouri.
The Milwaukee area school is the top seed heading into the seven-day event, despite a large roster turnover from last season.
Coming off of last year’s national championship, 5th year coach Drew Diener had 9 new faces on his roster to mesh around returning starters Derek Semenas (Senior from Rosendale/UW-Green Bay) and junior Tony Smith (Fond du Lac).
Semenas averaged 24 points a game this season and was the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Player of the Year.
Smit (11.3 ppg/5.4 apg) was also a first team all-league choice.
The Wolves (29-4) will play Northern New Mexico (16-15) in the first round at noon today (Wednesday). Teams must win 5 games in 7 days to win the NAIA National Championship.
AUDIO: Drew Diener says they have a target on their backs :17
AUDIO: Drew Diener thinks they can win it all again :20
(Thanks to Wade Bades at affiliate KFIZ in Fond du Lac for contributing)