Old MCAC basketball rival York College spoiled Central Christian College’s men’s Senior Day on Saturday with an 84-78 victory at Alexander Arena.
Central, which at one time was 12-2, goes into postseason play with a 17-10 record. The Tigers had a 40-35 halftime lead, but York was on fire in the second half to rally for the victory. The Panthers made 18 of 26 shots for 69 percent after the break.
Alonzo Stafford had a double-double for CCC with 22 points and 10 rebounds. Sam Clayborn added 18 points, Michael Gholston scored 12 and Ernest Burton chipped in with 10.
Central heads to Grand Rapids, Iowa, on Friday to play old MCAC rival College of the Ozarks at 9:45 p.m. in the first round of the AII Tournament. Ozarks has swept the two games played this season, though both were close.
Central (78) — Stafford 22, Adams 3, Jackson 6, Nwosuh 4, Gholston 12, Burton 10, Clayborn 18, Warren 1, Robbins 2.
York (84) — Price 5, Coleman 24, Lenear 3, Cooksey 18, Smith 17, Johnson 3, Karbhari 12, Tolliver 2.
• YORK WOMEN 87, CENTRAL 79 — It was a difficult end to the season for the Lady Tigers, who after climbing to 8-12 finished with 10 straight losses.
Central appeared to be on its way to a feel-good finish, but York charged back with a huge fourth quarter, outscoring CCC 24-10.
"It was a disappointing way to end the season, but I'm proud of how hard our kids played tonight,” CCC coach Chris Honeck said. “In the end, we didn't hit enough shots and York did. We battled on the boards, we took good care of the ball, but tonight that wasn't enough."
Heather Crittenden completed an excellent first season with Central with 24 points and 12 rebounds. MacKenzie Woods and Libby Brooks scored 13 points apiece and Abbie Banks furnished 11.
“Although the season didn't end the way we wanted it to, it was still a season of milestones,” Honeck said. “Libby Brooks ended her career as the all-time leader in games played and in 3-pointers made. Ashlyn Garza hit her 100th 3-pointer earlier in the season and Abbie Banks shattered the single season record for assists."
The game was the last for seniors Brooks, Garza, Krystina Stackhouse, Savannah Fairchild, Molly Young, Ciara Costello and Kylie Laskowski.
“Our program is in a better place because of their being a part of it and they will be tough to replace,” Honeck said. “Looking forward, though, we have a solid core around which to build, and have already begun working on next year's recruiting class. While I'll definitely miss our graduating seniors, I'm excited about the future of Tiger basketball.”
Central (79) — Laskowski 2, Young 3, Costello 7, Woods 13, Brooks 13, Grimaldo 6, Crittenden 24, Banks 11.
York (87) — Eller 19, Wilson 2, Womack 13, Maher 10, Sharkey 3, Nelson 1, Esquivel 11, Pascal 6, Mosely 12, Kleber 6, Shafer 4.