By Tad Dorsey
- #8 Morningside had an eventful week despite not playing a game, as #21 Jamestown’s loss against Northwestern allowed the Mustangs to clinch the #1 seed in the GPAC and an automatic bid in the national tournament. Morningside is 16-3 in the GPAC, 20-3 overall. They will close the regular season against RV Northwestern on Saturday before opening GPAC tournament play against the 8 seed Mount Marty.
- RV Northwestern moved into a tie for second in the GPAC with a huge home victory over #21 Jamestown, 88-79. This concludes a season sweep over Jamestown, which allows Northwestern to be in position to claim the #2 seed in the GPAC tournament with a victory over #8 Morningside on Wednesday in their season finale. This is important as the regular season runner up in the GPAC could receive an auto bid if Morningside wins the conference tournament. After falling behind 58-50 to Jamestown early in the 2nd half the Raiders offense came to life with an 11-0 run. It was sparked by a four-point play by Trent Hilbrands. A late 14-2 run allowed the Raiders to seal the victory. Alex Van Kalsbeek was 10-14 (7-7 at the line) with 27 points, 14 rebounds, and 5 assists. Trent Hilbrands was 9-16 with 23 points and 3 rebounds. Isaac Heyer was 7-10 (5-7 from 3) with 23 points, 4 rebounds and 3 steals. Northwestern improves to 14-5 in the GPAC, 19-5 overall.
- #21 Jamestown lost 88-79 at RV Northwestern to fall into a second-place tie in the GPAC. Jamestown had a strong first half to go up 43-40 at halftime in an offensive game. After going up 58-50, the Jimmies offense stalled, and Northwestern took advantage with that 11-0 run. Jamestown was able to stay in the game late but were unable to get back in the lead. Marc Kjos was 7-13 (6-10 from 3) with 20 points, 7 assists, and 4 rebounds. Mason Walters was 8-16 with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Brock Schrom was 6-6 with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Jamestown goes to 14-5 and 18-6 overall. They are at RV Dakota Wesleyan on Saturday to close the season. A win would clinch a 3 seed or better.
- RV Dakota Wesleyan split a pair of matchups this week. They fell 64-59 at home against Dordt. The first half was an offensive struggle for the Tigers. They were trailing 30-21 late in the half, before a layup by Jeffrey Schuch and a turnover leading to a Nick Harden basket as time expired cut the lead to 30-25 Dordt at the break. The Tigers would manage to draw even at 30 early in the 2nd half. Dordt then went on a run and went up 53-40 with 7 minutes left. DWU wouldn’t go away without a fight. Baskets by Koln Oppold lead a Tiger run that cut the lead to 55-53 in the last three minutes of the game. The Tigers had a chance to tie with a three at the end, but it fell short. Nick Harden was 5-20 (10-12 at the line) with 20 points and 6 assists. The Tigers bounced back with an 82-81 victory over Midland. This game was competitive from start to finish as the score would indicate. Both teams had small leads throughout the first half, as it ended 42-40 Midland. Midland jumped to a 48-40 lead after halftime. The Tigers rallied and eventually regained the lead with a three by Nick Harden to go up 55-54 midway through the half. The lead would continue to switch hands through the rest of the game. Midland was up 81-79 as DWU had the last shot, a successful three by Nick Harden. Harden finished 9-15 (5-5 from 3) with 27 points and 5 assists. Jeffrey Schuch was 9-11 with 21 points, 9 rebounds, and 3 assists. DWU goes to 13-6 in the GPAC, 17-7 overall. They close the season at home against #21 Jamestown.
- Concordia had the week off. The Bulldogs are 12-6 in the GPAC, 15-8 overall. They have two games this week, they host Hastings on Wednesday before closing at home against Doane on Saturday.
- Dordt pulled an upset over RV Dakota Wesleyan 64-59 at the Corn Palace. An early 7-0 run sparked by a Jesse Jansma three had Dordt up 28-19 early. They held the lead at 30-25 at the half. DWU would manage to retake the lead in the 2nd half, but an 8-0 Defender run allowed them to get the lead back. Bryce Coppock was 5-9 with 18 points. Jacob Vis was 4-5 (4-4 from the line) with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Dordt improves to 12-7 in the GPAC, 17-7 overall. They close the season at Briar Cliff on Saturday.
- Briar Cliff had the week off. Briar Cliff is 9-10 in the GPAC, 12-2 overall. They have secured the 7 seed in the GPAC tournament. They close the regular season at home against Dordt on February 20th, they are off this week.
- Mount Marty had the week off. The Lancers finish the regular season at 6-14 in the GPAC, 9-16 overall. They will be the 8 seed in the GPAC tournament, facing off against #8 Morningside in round 1.
- Doane lost 75-71 at Midland. The Tigers found themselves trailing 42-34 at halftime. Doane came out strong after halftime, going on a 9-0 run to go up 43-42. The Warriors responded with a 14-0 run to take control of the game. Jaxon Harre was 10-15 with 23 points and 7 rebounds. Anthony Laravie was 6-11 with 16 points and 7 rebounds. Doane falls to 3-16 in the GPAC, 6-18 overall. They are at Concordia on Saturday to conclude their season.
- Midland split a pair of matchups this week. They defeated Doane 75-71. They were red hot offensively in the first half, going 10-17 from 3 to lead 42-34 at halftime. After Doane rallied to take the lead after halftime, Midland used a 14-0 run to go up 58-48 with 11:08 left. They put the game away by going 11-12 from the line in the 2nd half. Bo Sandquist was 6-17 (5-6 FTs) with 22 points, 4 rebounds, and 3 steals. Arturo Montes was 5-8 (5-8 from 3) with 15 points and 4 rebounds. The Warriors lost a tight matchup against RV Dakota Wesleyan, 82-81. The Warriors led 42-40 at halftime and battled for the entire game. They had a late lead before a game winning three by DWU. Emanuel Bryson was 10-14 with 20 points and 4 rebounds. Laurence Merritt was 9-16 (6-10 from 3) with 24 points. Midland goes to 3-16 in the GPAC, 5-17 overall. They close the season against Hastings on Saturday.
- Hastings was off last week. They are 2-16 in the GPAC, 6-17 overall. Hastings is at Concordia on Wednesday before concluding their season at home against Midland on Saturday.
TAD’S POWER RANKINGS
- Morningside (-) Another regular season championship.
- Northwestern (+4) – Sweep of Jamestown is enough for me to move them ahead of the Jimmies
- Jamestown (-1) – Closing with a win over DWU would be huge
- Concordia (-) – Wins against Hastings and Doane are necessary
- Dakota Wesleyan (-2) – Big game against Jamestown this week
- Dordt (-) – Road wins over DWU always impressive
- Briar Cliff (-) – Looking to get to .500 in conference against Dordt.
- Mount Marty (-) – Matched up with Morningside in the GPAC tournament.
- Midland (+1) – Back in the win column over Doane and competitive against DWU
- Doane (-1) – Lost to Midland drops them one spot
- Hastings (-) – Closing out the season with CUNE and Midland.
GPAC Games of the Week
#8 Morningside (16-3 20-3) at RV Northwestern (14-5 19-5)
Saturday February 20th 4:00pm CT
Northwestern needs a win to guarantee a 2 seed.
#21 Jamestown (14-5 18-6) at RV Dakota Wesleyan (13-6 17-7)
Saturday February 20th 4:00pm CT
Both teams looking to improve their national tournament resumes
Dordt (12-7 17-7) at Briar Cliff (9-10 12-12)
Saturday February 20th 4:00pm CT
Rivalry matchup, tune up before conference tournament play
GPAC Stat Leaders
Points Per Game
- Mason Walters (JAM) 21.71ppg (17th nationally)
- Alex Van Kalsbeek (NWC) 20.00ppg
- Nick Harden (DWU) 17.14ppg
- Trey Brown (MOR) 17.09ppg
- Trent Hilbrands (NWC) 16.79ppg
- Karson Gansebom (HAS) 16.74ppg
- Anthony Laravie (DOA) 16.67ppg
- Justin Wiersema (CUNE) 16.65ppg
- Jailen Billings (MMU) 15.80ppg
- Mason Hiemstra (HAS) 15.73ppg
FG% (minimum 75% games played, and 5 FG made per game)
- Alex Van Kalsbeek (NWC) 74.5% (2nd nationally)
- Trey Brown (MOR) 62.3% (16th nationally)
- Mason Walters (JAM) 61.8% (17th nationally)
- Craig Sterk (NWC) 58.7%
- Justin Wiersema (CUNE) 55.9%
- Dashawn Walker (HAS) 51.9%
- Zach Imig (MOR) 50.7%
- Karson Gansebom (HAS) 50.7%
- Trent Hilbrands (NWC) 47.5%
- Koln Oppold (DWU) 47.2%
3PT FG% (Min 75% of games played and 1.5 3PT FG per game)
- Aidan Vanderloo (MOR) 60.3% (2nd nationally)
- Marc Kjos (JAM) 44.8%
- Trent Hilbrands (NWC) 44.7%
- Will Cordes (JAM) 44.6%
- Luke Ronsiek (MMU) 44.0%
- Quinn Vesey (BCU) 43.0%
- Cole Woodford (JAM) 41.7%
- Sawyer Schultz (DWU) 41.4%
- Justin Wiersema (CUNE) 40.8%
- Conner Groves (BCU) 40.5%
Assists per game
- Zach Imig (MOR) 5.09apg
- Marc Kjos (JAM) 4.52apg
- Jay Small (NWC) 4.04apg
- Nick Harden (DWU) 3.86apg
- Jake Rueschhoff (MID) 3.85apg
- Jesse Jansma (DOR) 3.75apg
- Elijah Pappas (MMU) 3.68apg
- Koln Oppold (DWU) 3.48apg
- Quinten Vasa (BCU) 3.38apg
- Alex Van Kalsbeek (NWC) 3.00apg
Rebounds per game
- Mason Walters (JAM) 12.42rpg (2nd nationally)
- Trey Brown (MOR) 11.13rpg (9th nationally)
- Gage Smith (CUNE) 9.17rpg
- Koln Oppold (DWU) 8.09rpg
- Zach Imig (MOR) 7.39rpg
- Garrett Franken (DOR) 7.33rpg
- Craig Sterk (NWC) 7.21rpg
- Alex Van Kalsbeek (NWC) 7.17rpg
- Dashawn Walker (HAS) 6.72rpg
- Elijah Pappas (MMU) 6.40rpg
Steals per game
- Nick Harden (DWU) 2.38spg (12th nationally)
- Mason Hiemstra (HAS) 1.68spg
- Elijah Pappas (MMU) 1.68spg
- Quinn Vesey (BCU) 1.67spg
- Zach Imig (MOR) 1.61spg
- Justin Wiersema (CUNE) 1.57spg
- Anthony Laravie (DOA) 1.42spg
- Conner Groves (BCU) 1.38spg
- Jake Rueschhoff (MID) 1.30spg
- Ben Gesink (DOR) 1.17spg
Blocks per game
- Mason Larson (DWU) 1.65bpg
- Jacob Vis (DOR) 1.13bpg
- Brock Schrom (JAM) 1.08bpg
- Trey Brown (MOR) 0.96bpg
- Camden Bialas (DOR) 0.91bpg
- Craig Sterk (NWC) 0.88bpg
- Alex Van Kalsbeek (NWC) 0.88bpg
- Mason Walters (JAM) 0.79bpg
- Trey Powers (MOR) 0.70bpg
- Ace Zorr (DWU) 0.70bpg