George Washington won its first National Invitation Tournament championship, getting 18 points from Kevin Larsen and pulling away in the second half to beat Valparaiso 76-60 on Thursday night at Madison Square Garden.
Patricio Garino had 14 points, Joe McDonald added 13 and the fourth-seeded Colonials (28-10) set a school record for wins in a season with a dominant performance over the final 20 minutes. They won their fourth straight game against a higher-seeded team and sent three senior starters out with a tournament trophy, softening the sting of being rebuffed by the NCAA selection committee.
Tyler Cavanaugh, selected the tournament's Most Outstanding Player, scored 12 points.
George Washington, which starts players from Argentina, Denmark and Japan, held Valparaiso star Alec Peters to two points in the second half. Peters finished with 15 for the top-seeded Crusaders (30-7), who went 8 for 28 from 3-point range.