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Lewis helps Oregon Tech win national title

Nate Lewis and his Oregon Tech teammates had a reason to celebrate the end of this season.
   Oregon Tech defeated top seed Bellevue (Neb.) 63-56 in the NAIA Division II championship game at Point Lookout, Mo., on Tuesday, March 18.
   This is Oregon Tech's second national title, with similarities to the first in 2004. Both times, the Owls defeated Bellevue in the title game. Each time, a Culver High grad helped Oregon Tech win the title.
   Lewis is a reserve guard for Owls this season. In 2004, Alex Carlson was the starting center for Oregon Tech. He just finished up his second season as the Culver girls' head coach.
   This season, Oregon Tech went into the March 13-18 tourney seeded 11th. The Owls defeated three higher seeds among their five wins. Oregon Tech beat No. 6 Evangline (Mo.) 65-42 on March 14 and then No. 2 MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) in the semifinals by a 74-71 margin.
   As a reserve guard Lewis played in all five games of the Owls' national games. Lewis played five minutes during the championship game.
   At nationals, Lewis played a total of 57 minutes, scoring eight points while pulling down six rebounds.
   This season, Lewis averaged 3.2 points and 12.2 minutes. Of his 42 field goals, 19 were 3-pointers. Lewis also pulled down 40 rebounds and had 21 assists.
   The Owls finished the season at 31-6. Oregon Tech qualified for nationals by finishing second in the Cascade Conference with a 16-4 record, a game behind Eastern Oregon which went 1-1 at nationals.