Lake Superior State controlled the boards throughout the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Tournament, but failed to keep pace with the league's best free-throw shooting team.
The No. 3-seeded Findlay Oilers (22-7) made 22-of-26 free throws for 84.6 percent to make the difference in Sunday's championship game. They won their second straight tournament title by beating LSSU, 75-69.
It was the No. 8-seeded Lakers' second tournament final appearance in school history and Findlay's fifth title since 2004.
The Oilers, who were 22-point victors over LSSU in their GLIAC opener on Nov. 29, averaged 78.9 percent at the free-throw line for the season.
LSSU (16-13), which out-rebounded Findlay 40-29 for the game, led 31-29 at halftime. Laker shooters came out cold in the second half and were out-scored 24-5 during the first 10 1/2 minutes. Sparked by big rebounds and a charge drawn by freshman Devin Daly, LSSU clawed its way back into the game. After a Derek Kinney layup at 4:22, Findlay's lead was down to six points, 60-54. A Derek Billing three-pointer cut it to five, 64-59, at 2:36.
LSSU and Findlay traded baskets until the Lakers were forced to foul during the final 35 seconds. The Oilers were 6-of-8 at the line down the stretch. Laker Alex Williams' three-pointer with six seconds left cut it to four, 73-69.
Kinney recorded a double double during his final collegiate game, totaling 18 points and 10 rebounds. Billing and Rashaun Carroll scored 12 points each, and Williams had nine. Daly finished behind Kinney in rebounds with six -- all during the second half.
LSSU shot 38.3 percent from the field, including 6-of-23 from behind the arc, and made 17-of-27 free throws for 63 percent.
Brad Piehl led Findlay with 14 points and eight rebounds. Greg Kahlig and Dylan Kaufman followed with 12 points each. The Oilers shot 45.1 percent from the field, including 7-of-18 from behind the arc.
LSSU totaled 17 turnovers and Findlay 13.
For the tournament, LSSU out-rebounded its opponents by an average of 33.3 to 27.3.