Watanabe, GW headed for NIT

Staff Report

The George Washington men’s basketball team didn’t receive an at-large invitation to the 68-team NCAA Tournament, on Selection Sunday.

Instead, the Colonials (23-10) will play in the 32-team National Invitation Tournament.

GW sophomore standout Yuta Watanabe and his teammates,who lost in the Atlantic 10 Conference’s tourney quarterfinals to Saint Joseph’s on Friday, now prepare for an NIT first-round home game against Hofstra (24-9) on Wednesday night.

GW is 14-3 at home.

The Colonials are a fourth seed; the Pride, a Colonial Athletic Association team, are seeded fifth. GW holds a 2-1 lead in their head-to-head series.

This season, Watanabe has appeared in all 33 GW games (32 starts). He’s the team leader in blocked shots (33). The Kagawa Prefecture native is averaging 8.5 points per game, tied for fourth-most on the team.