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District Colleges

Jeannette grad Julian Batts headed to NCAA Tournament

Bill Beckner Jr.
| Tuesday, March 6, 2018, 9:48 p.m.
LIU Brooklyn freshman Julian Batts takes a three-point shot during a game against Robert Morris Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, at Sewall Center in Moon.
Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
LIU Brooklyn freshman Julian Batts takes a three-point shot during a game against Robert Morris Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, at Sewall Center in Moon.

One of the main reasons Julian Batts stayed at Long Island Brooklyn after a coaching change is because he wanted to experience March Madness with his teammates.

Suddenly, that is a reality for the sophomore guard from Jeannette.

Batts helped fourth-seeded LIU Brooklyn defeat No. 1 Wagner, 71-61, on Tuesday night on Staten Island, N.Y. for the Northeastern Conference Tournament championship.

He had eight points and five rebounds in 30 minutes for the Blackbirds (18-16), who secured a berth in the NCAA Tournament.

Last year, Batts and LIU Brooklyn lost to Robert Morris in the first round of the NEC Tournament, 69-68.

Batts came into the conference final averaging 10.1 points and 4.2 rebounds. He has started 33 of 34 games.

LIU Brooklyn has clinched an automatic bid into the NCAA tournament seven times. The Blackbirds will make their first trip since 2013.

When LIU Brooklyn and Wagner (23-9) played in January, Batts made a layup with 1.8 seconds left to give the Blackbirds a 69-67 win.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at bbeckner@tribweb.com or via Twitter @BillBeckner.

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