It certainly wasn't the finish Brent Wrapp would have preferred. Yet the player few coaches wanted upon his graduation from Fairview High School still was fortunate enough to enjoy another memorable experience on Tuesday in what is turning out to be an accomplished college basketball career.
After winning three consecutive road games to reach the Final Four of the NIT, Wrapp's run with Cal State-Bakersfield came to a harsh end Tuesday night, with the Roadrunners suffering a 76-61 loss against Georgia Tech at Madison Square Garden.
One year after helping CSU-Bakersfield reach the NCAA Tournament at the Division I level for the first time in school history, Wrapp was able to compete at one of college basketball's most historic venues.
The scholarship offer from Cal State-Bakersfield was Wrapp's only Division I offer out of Fairview, yet he now has been a starting guard on teams that have reached the NCAA Tournament and the NIT Final Four in consecutive seasons.
Wrapp struggled to get on track against a Georgia Tech team that never trailed, with the fourth-year junior going 0-for-2 with no points, two assists, and four turnovers in 15 minutes.
It was a frustrating and uncharacteristic finish to the NIT for a player that has led the Western Athletic Conference in assist-to-turnover ratio the past two seasons. In the final two NIT games Wrapp went 0-for-5 from the field with four assists and nine turnovers.
Wrapp's postseason run included a solid performance in a return to his home state last week, as the Roadrunners won a second-round game at Colorado State with Wrapp contributing eight points, six rebounds, and three assists. That outing featured two early 3-pointers from Wrapp in an opening salvo that gave the Roadrunners a lead they never relinquished.
Wrapp and the Roadrunners have won at least 24 games each of the past two seasons but will suffer significant graduation losses.
TCU 68, UCF 53: Kenrich Williams scored 12 of his 14 points in the second half to lift Texas Christian to a win over Central Florida in the other semifinal.
Texas Christian will meet Georgia Tech in the championship game Thursday night.
Williams also grabbed 14 rebounds and had seven assists.
Vladimir Brodziansky led the Horned Frogs with 18 points.