CHARLESTON -- For the second straight night, Salem-Teikyo used defense and two devastating runs to put away its opponent.
The only difference was Saturday night's 66-57 win over Alderson-Broaddus was for the West Virginia Conference tournament title, and it couldn't have come at a better time.
On the brink of not reaching the NCAA Division II East Regional for the first time in four years after losing two games in the final week of the regular season, Salem assured itself a spot in the six-team field as the automatic qualifier.
But it wasn't easy.
Salem used a 6-0 run to end of the first half and a 17-4 run to start the second to gain control of its second tourney title in three years. Derrick Paul scored four points in the first run that gave S-TU a 27-24 halftime lead.
After Salem built a 51-35 lead with 8:24 left, A-B chipped away, eventually using an 11-1 run to cut the lead to 58-54 with 54 seconds left. Salem held off the charge at the foul line, knocking down eight of nine to clinch the win.
"Down the stretch we got some key stops and made some baskets," Salem coach Mike Carey said. "We picked it up defensively and started reversing the ball offensively."
Alderson-Broaddus coach Brett Vincent said Salem's defense was a big factor.
"We didn't play our best game tonight, and that probably had to do with Salem's defense," Vincent said.
Leroy Blyden led Salem with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Ed Jenkins, who was named the tournament's most valuable player, added 16 points and seven rebounds. Amilcar Butler chipped in 13 points.
Courtnay Tolliver led A-B with 18 points and eight rebounds. Glen Phillips added 15 and Allen Jenkins had 12 points, all in the second half.
Salem's Jenkins was joined on the all-tournament team by teammates Charles Dinkens and Butler, A-B's Jenkins, Phillips, Kevyn McBride and Tolliver, Charleston's Ajamu Gaines and Shawn Thigpen and Fairmont State's Marcel O'Neal.