Central Christian College’s men are firing on all cylinders.
With an 84-73 victory over Northern New Mexico here Saturday in a key AII game, the streaking Tigers have won six in a row, are 14-5 overall and 3-0 in AII play.
"We were tested tonight by a physical team and came away with a win,” CCC coach Tony Romero said. “I thought we were really sluggish and lacked energy the first half. NNMC had a lot to do with that. I felt they dictated the tempo the first 20 minutes. The second half we did a better job pushing the pace of the game and were moving quicker in the halfcourt and sped them up on their end. We didn't necessarily shoot the ball that well, which can happen in playing back-to-back nights.”
The Tigers, however, were relentless off the glass, which led to second-chance opportunities.
“The stat of the night and I felt the difference in the game was our ability to crash the offensive boards and convert them into points,” Romero said. “When we were missing, we found a way to gain extra possessions. That was a focus of ours going into the game, and we came away with 20 second-chance points.”
Michael Gholston led CCC with 20 points, while Sam Clayborn tallied 18 and Ernest Burton added 12.
The Tigers have a monster stretch coming up with five straight games away from Alexander Arena. They play Barclay College on Tuesday, then go to New Mexico for two games against the teams they just played.
Central (84) — Clayborn 18, Nwosuh 8, Gholston 20, Warren 8, Osagie 9, Lenard 3, Kuminga 6, Burton 12.
Northern New Mexico (73) — Simmons 16, Ugbisien 11, Infante 2, Tucker 10, Coca 12, Woods-Williams 14, Long 2, Watane 2, Burgard 4.
• JOHNSON AND WALES WOMEN 71, CENTRAL 51 — All seemed well with the Tigers early, up 13-5 after the first quarter.
But the Wildcats came out to start the second quarter with 11 of the first 12 points and Central could not respond.
Abbie Banks led CCC with 18 points. Ridglea Hearne furnished 11.
“Not a good day for us at either end of the court,” CCC coach Chris Honeck said. “Defensively, we didn't guard well and didn't rebound well. At the offensive end, we didn't execute effectively and allowed JWU to dictate what we did."
The Wildcats’ Cara McNiff made 7 3-pointers on her way to 23 points.
Central is now 8-9 on the season, 1-2 in the AII. It goes to Barclay on Tuesday.
Central (51) — Banks 18, Hearne 11, Grimaldo 8, Redenbaugh 8, Gonzalez 6.
Johnson and Wales (71) — Sales 9, Butler 7, Maestas 8, Ford 16, McNiff 23, Riley 6, Gros 2.