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WIAC titles on the line Saturday at Karges

Senior Shane Manor of Altoona leads the Falcon men's basketball team in scoring this season with an average of 18.1 points per game. Bob Burrows photo.

Both the UW-River Falls men's and women's basketball teams can earn at least shares of their respective Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) championships when they take on UW-Whitewater in a college basketball doubleheader Saturday at Karges Center.

The Falcon women host the Warhawks at 3 p.m. while the men's game is scheduled for 5 p.m.

The UWRF women can share the WIAC title with a win over Whitewater and a UW-Eau Claire victory over UW-Stevens Point. The Blugolds and Pointers square off at 3 p.m. Saturday in Eau Claire.

The Pointers have already clinched at least a share of the conference title and sit alone in first place with a record of 13-2 while UWRF and UWEC are tied for second, both at 12-3. Wins by the Falcons and Blugolds would result in a three-way share of the conference championship.

Things are much clearer for the Falcon men, who are currently in a three-way tie for first place in the WIAC with Whitewater and Stevens Point, all at 12-3.

If the Falcons defeat the Warhawks, they earn at least a share of the WIAC title regardless of the outcome between the Pointers and Blugolds in Eau Claire. A Pointer win would make them co-champs with River Falls while a Blugold win would give the Falcons the title outright.

In addition to deciding WIAC champs Saturday, the games will also determine the final seeding for next week's WIAC men's and women's tournaments. The top two seeds receive first round byes. The winner of the conference tournament receives an automatic berth in the NCAA Division III National Championship Tournament.

In college hockey action, the third-seeded Falcon men open the NCHA playoffs with a two-game series against sixth-seeded Eau Claire Friday and Saturday at 7:05 p.m. both nights at Hunt Arena.

Bob Burrows
Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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