It all comes down to one game for the College Basketball Invitational Championship. Santa Clara took the first game, 81-73, but George Mason pushed the CBI Championship Series to a third and final game with a 73-66 victory on Wednesday night.
The decisive third game may come down to which team gets the most out of its star guard. Santa Clara guard Kevin Foster notched 28 points in Game 1, but was held to 16 in Game 2, the first game in the CBI Tournament that he failed to reach 20 points. In that second game, George Mason's Sherrod Wright led all scorers with 20 points. Wright, Mason's leading scorer during the season, was held to just three points in Game 1. In both games, the team with the overall leading scorer earned the victory.
Friday's game will be played at George Mason's normal home, the Patriot Center. Due to a scheduling conflict, Game 2 was played in their Recreation & Athletic Center with a max capacity crowd of 1280 fans. While the Patriot Center holds over 10,000, Santa Clara may prefer that more typical venue to the tightly packed practice facility used on Wednesday.
Four of the previous five Championship Series have gone to a third game. In the last two tournaments, the eventual champion lost the first game of the series, but went on to win the next two at home. George Mason hopes to follow in the footsteps of Pittsburgh and Oregon on Friday.
Game time: Friday, 7 p.m. ET
TV: AXS TV