CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — An NAIA National Tournament bid is on the line this afternoon for Central Christian College’s men’s basketball team.
The Tigers lost 74-68 on Saturday to No. 1 seed Mount Mercy in the AII Tournament semifinals, but the conference gets three bids to nationals because there are so many teams, which is why a third-place game is being played.
Central, 18-11 on the season, is playing Washington Adventist at 2:00, as it stunned No. 2 seed Rochester University in the quarterfinals on Friday before losing to York by a point on Saturday.
Against Mount Mercy, the Tigers actually had a four-point halftime lead, 35-31, and still were up by four with 3:30 remaining, but Mount Mercy went on a 13-3 kick to close out the game.
Alonzo Stafford led the Tigers with 22 points, while Michael Gholston added 17. Kendric Warren swept the glass for 10 rebounds.
The Tigers were only 22 of 58 from the field and fell in love with the 3-pointer, taking 30 while making 12. They also turned it over 18 times.
Central (68) — Nwosuh 2, Gholston 17, Clayborn 9, Stafford 22, Warren 8, Jackson 5, Burton 5.
Mount Mercy (74) — Houston 16, Wagner 15, Ford 11, Parker 10, Bedford 3, Brawner 6, Lamaak 3, Struss 5, Gogg 5.