Falcons Come Up Short in BCA Classic Final
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Travis Diener scored 34 points, hitting five 3-pointers, as Marquette beat Air Force 69-65 in a wild shootout for championship of the Black Coaches Association Classic Tuesday night.
Dameon Mason added 12 points and Steve Novak 10 for Marquette (3-0), which won all three of its games in the eight-team, three-day tournament.
Matt McCraw and Nick Welch both scored 15 points for Air Force (2-1). McCraw got all his points on 3-pointers, making all five he tried.
Air Force led 48-44 after Jared Dillinger and Antoine Hood hit back to back 3-pointers.
But Diener responded with three 3-points to put the Golden Eagles ahead 55-50 with 9:08 left to play. Diener's three long range baskets were part of an 11-2 run in which he scored all of Marquette's points.
Diener, who made 5-of-9 3-point shots and was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player, hit his fifth trey with 2:41 left for a 63-57 Marquette lead.
With 24 seconds left, McCraw made his fifth 3-pointer to pull the Falcons within three at 68-65. But with 16.7 seconds left, Diener made one of two free throws to make it 69-65.
Marquette led 35-32 after a hard-fought first half in which the score was tied six times.
The teams had not met since Dec. 28, 1987, when Marquette beat Air Force 80-52 in Milwaukee.
The Falcons host Alcorn State in the home opener on Sunday, Nov. 21 at noon.