Northeastern beats NC-Wilmington 78-71 to reach CAA final

BALTIMORE (AP) Scott Eatherton scored 21 points, and Northeastern earned a berth in the Colonial Athletic Association title game by defeating North Carolina-Wilmington 78-71 on Sunday night.

Five players reached double figures in scoring for the third-seeded Huskies (22-11), who will face No. 1 seed William & Mary on Monday night. The winner receives an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Jordon Talley scored 18 and Craig Ponder added 17 for second-seeded UNCW (18-13). The Seahawks twice beat Northeastern during the regular season, but in this one they fell behind with 11:40 left and never caught up.

UNCW scored the game’s first six points, which ended up being the biggest lead by either team until a basket by Eatherton made it 59-53.

Cedrick Williams answered with a three-point play for the Seahawks, but a dunk by Talley and a layup by Devon Begley put Northeastern in front 63-56 with 4:17 remaining.

It was 64-59 before a three-point play by Eatherton made it an eight-point game with three minutes to go.