It was only appropriate that McPherson College’s Samson Shivers broke the all-time school scoring record here Saturday night on one of his patented 22-foot 3-pointers.
The official time was 12:07 left in the first half when Shivers splashed his trey to break Kenny Romero’s former record of 2,000 points.
With 18 points in the Bulldogs’ 91-88 loss to Ottawa, Shivers now has scored 2,016 points and leading the cheers was Romero, who was on hand to watch his record fall.
The ever-humble Shivers (who also was named the recipient of the Pat Noyes Award before the game) would rather have had the win, as the Bulldogs fell to 6-10 in the KCAC and 13-15 overall, with eight of their losses coming by six points or less.
“It is an honor,” the Houston native said. “I really did want to end it out with the win. I have to thank my teammates, if it weren’t for my teammates and coaches setting everything good for me, I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish this record.”
“I’m proud of Samson,” Mac coach Tim Swartzendruber said. “He’s had an amazing career here. I think he would have traded that (record) for a win tonight I know, but with him being only three points away, we were quite confident that he was going to be able to break the record tonight and that’s good for him.”
Disappointment was etched on Shivers’ face, as it was for Swartzendruber, who has never seen a season where so many close games haven’t gone his way.
“We’ve been right there with virtually everybody in the conference,” Swartzendruber said. “The thing tonight was we just could not stop Ottawa for so long. They shot it well. Our defense was bad until the last five minutes, then we finally made some stops.”
The Bulldogs spent most of the game down by a healthy margin, including a 13-point deficit with 10 minutes to go. In fact, it was still an 11-point game, 86-75, with 3:24 to go.
Mac made a highly spirited comeback and even had a chance to go ahead with 12 seconds left when T.J. Grant’s 3-pointer slid off the rim. OU kept Mac in the game by missing five free throws in the final 39 seconds, but the Bulldogs did themselves no favors either by making just 21 of 31 on the night.
“I was proud we were back in the ballgame,” said Swartzendruber, whose teams always has played with a fighting spirit all year.
Also in double figures for Mac were Grant (15), Brian Johnson (14), D’onte Woods (10) and Devirous Johnson (10 points, 13 rebounds as he gave away 6 inches to Alex Lundry inside).
Muscular Julian Rose scored 24 points for the Braves. Adam Hasty, though, controlled the game from the point with 17 points and 11 assists. Colin Nichols hurt Mac off the bench with 15 points (10 more than his average) and Jason Haase also had a big game off the pine with 10.
Mac is home for the Senior Night on Thursday against county rival Bethany, which has dropped two in a row and perhaps has played its way out of championship contention.
Mac (88) — D. Johnson 10, Shivers 18, B. Johnson 14, Grant 15, Berry 2, Lakin 5, Henson 8, Woods 10, Bevan 6.
Ottawa (91) — Falk 3, Lundry 8, Adam Hasty 17, Rose 24, Newton 2, Alex Hasty 7, Haase 10, Nichols 15, Regier 5.