#8 Morningside fell 83-66 at RV Northwestern. After a competitive first half, the Mustangs got cold in the second half, scoring just 28 points. Northwestern’s offense never cooled down. Trey Brown was 6-13 with 18 points and 16 rebounds. Nevertheless, Morningside is still set to enter the GPAC tournament as the #1 seed with a national tournament spot already guaranteed. We currently have the Mustangs as a #1 seed in the national tournament, in the Wichita Region hosted by Friends. It seems they would have a good chance to finish as a one seed if they win their GPAC tournament opener, Wednesday against 8 seed Mount Marty.
RV Northwestern clinched the #2 seed in the GPAC with a massive 83-66 victory over #8 Morningside. This is a big win for their national tournament hopes, as they would receive the GPAC’s second bid if #8 Morningside wins the tournament now as the regular season runner up. Of course, the Raiders will hope they can win the GPAC Tournament themselves. They defeated the Mustangs behind a career night from senior Craig Sterk on Senior Day. He scored a career high 34 points on 13-22 shooting and added 13 rebounds, 3 blocks, and 3 steals to help seal the Raiders’ 10th win in a row entering the tournament. Our bracketology currently has Northwestern as the #18 overall seed. They’re listed as a 1 seed in the Omaha Region. I would guess they would need a few wins in the GPAC tournament to secure that 1 seed. They will start the GPAC Tournament Wednesday hosting Briar Cliff.
#21 Jamestown again hit a roadblock, falling 77-70 at RV Dakota Wesleyan. A late 12-0 run by Dakota Wesleyan in the first half broke a tie and saw the Jimmies down 12 at halftime. The Jimmies could not get back within single digits until closing the game on an 18-5 run. Mason Walters had 14 points and 5 rebounds. Marc Kjos added 13 points and 9 rebounds. Jamestown still managed to win a 3 way tiebreaker over DWU and Concordia to receive the 3 seed in the GPAC Tournament. Our bracketology has them as the #29 overall seed and playing in the Nampa, Idaho region. They are listed as our second to last at large team in the field, so they are squarely on the bubble. A win over 6 seed Dordt in their first GPAC tournament game on Wednesday would likely be a must.
RV Dakota Wesleyan got a very important 77-70 win over #21 Jamestown, allowing them to claim the #4 seed in the GPAC tournament and a home game in the first round. It was nice for them to see Mason Larson back on the court following a four-game absence. He started the game by hitting a 3. DWU finished the first half well, as they were up 12 at halftime. They were able to maintain a lead for the 2nd half. Nick Harden was 8-21 (6-7 FT) with 22 points, 6 assists, and 3 rebounds. Mason Larson finished 6-11 with 15 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals. Our bracketology has DWU as the #25 overall seed, playing in the Omaha Region. They are listed as the 5th at large team, out of 11. They have a very good chance of qualifying for the tournament, and a first round GPAC tournament victory over Concordia on Wednesday would make that chance even stronger.
Concordia picked up a pair of victories. They defeated Hastings 106-73 in a game where they scored 58 points in the first half and lead by as much as 35. Carter Kent was 6-11 with 19 points and 7 assists. Gage Smith was 6-8 with 17 points, 11 rebounds, and 4 assists. The Bulldogs continued their strong play with an 84-63 victory over Doane. They again had a strong first half which saw them up 48-34. The Tigers never were closer than 11 in the second half as Concordia sealed the blowout. Gage Smith was 9-14 with 21 points and 13 rebounds. Justin Wiersema was 7-12 with 15 points, 3 assists, and 3 steals. Concordia is the 5 seed in the GPAC Tournament. Our bracketology has them among the second four out of the national tournament, so it would seem likely that they would need multiple wins in the GPAC tournament to get closer to the right side of the bubble. They start their GPAC Tournament Title defense at #4 seed RV Dakota Wesleyan on Wednesday.
Dordt defeated Briar Cliff 86-84 to close the regular season. The Defenders led by double digits for parts of the first half before a BCU run had the lead down to 39-30 at halftime. The Chargers took the lead early in the 2nd half. The lead changed several times in the 2nd half before baskets by Jesse Jansma and Cade Bleeker pushed the Defenders lead to 79-71. The Chargers got the lead back down to two with a chance to tie the game on the last possession before Jacob Vis got a steal to secure the victory. Jesse Jansma was 8-15 with 21 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists. Dordt is the 6 seed in the GPAC tournament. Our bracketology lists them among the Third Four Out, so their best bet would be to simply win the GPAC Tournament. A run to the finals could potentially bring them close to the bubble, but it would be dicey I’d imagine. They open GPAC tournament play at #21 Jamestown on Wednesday.
Briar Cliff fell 86-84 to Dordt. It was a back-and-forth game. The Chargers fell behind early but sparked a comeback in the 2nd half to take the lead. Dordt closed out the game with the victory. Conner Groves was 5-9 with 15 points and 3 assists. The Chargers are the 7 seed in the GPAC tournament. They would need to win the GPAC tournament to qualify for the NAIA Tournament. They open play at RV Northwestern on Wednesday.
Mount Marty had the week off. They are the 8 seed in the GPAC tournament and would need to win the tournament to qualify for the NAIA Tournament. They open play at #8 Morningside on Wednesday.
Midland closed the season with an 85-63 victory at Hastings. The Warriors started fast, as they had an early 36-18 lead. From there the offense continued to roll, and Hastings was unable to keep up. The lead grew to as much as 31 points. Bo Sandquist scored 27 points to hit exactly 1,000 career points on the last game of the season. He was 9-16 and 8-14 from the field and also added 9 rebounds. Laurence Merrit was 7-13 with 18 points and 7 rebounds. Midland’s season is over.
Doane fell 84-63 against Concordia. They were unable to slow down Concordia’s offense, and the Tiger offense was unable to keep pace. Alec Oberhauser was 5-11 with 13 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assists. Nick Saiz was 3-5 with 11 points. Doane’s season is over.
Hastings lost a pair of games. They fell 106-73 at Concordia. Early on Hastings was able to keep pace with the Bulldogs’ offense, but they were unable to stay in the game. Concordia’s offense proved to hot to handle in the matchup. Mason Hiemstra was 6-16 (4-8 from 3) with 20 points. Ben Juhl was 8-14 with 18 points and 5 rebounds. Dashawn Walker was 8-16 with 17 points and 7 rebounds. Hastings also lost 85-63 against Midland. An early run by Midland gave them a 24-11 lead and Hastings was never able to get back in the game. Dashawn Walker scored 16 points and added 14 rebounds.
TAD’S POWER RANKINGS
Morningside (-) Looking to secure a 1 seed nationally
Northwestern (-) – Hottest team in the conference
Dakota Wesleyan (+2) – Getting Mason Larson back gave them a necessary spark against Jamestown
Jamestown (-1) – Rough loss to DWU, need to find some offensive spark for the tournament
Concordia (-) – Offense was very good this week
Dordt (-) – Tight win over BCU
Briar Cliff (-) – Another close loss, they’ve been competitive against teams above them in the standings
Mount Marty (-) – Matched up with Morningside in the GPAC tournament.
Midland (-) – Finished with a win
Doane (-) – Defense struggled against Concordia
Hastings (-) – Rough losses to close the season
GPAC Stat Leaders
Points Per Game
Mason Walters (JAM) 21.71ppg (14th nationally)
Alex Van Kalsbeek (NWC) 19.92ppg
Nick Harden (DWU) 17.78ppg
Trey Brown (MOR) 17.13ppg
Anthony Laravie (DOA) 16.67ppg
Justin Wiersema (CUNE) 16.56ppg
Karson Gansebom (HAS) 16.46ppg
Trent Hilbrands (NWC) 16.44ppg
Jailen Billings (MMU) 15.80ppg
Mason Hiemstra (HAS) 15.75ppg
FG% (minimum 75% games played, and 5 FG made per game)
Alex Van Kalsbeek (NWC) 73.9% (2nd nationally)
Mason Walters (JAM) 61.8% (18th nationally)
Trey Brown (MOR) 61.5% (T19th nationally)
Craig Sterk (NWC) 58.8%
Justin Wiersema (CUNE) 56.3%
Gage Smith (CUNE) 53.8%
Dashawn Walker (HAS) 50.4%
Karson Gansebom (HAS) 50.4%
Koln Oppold (DWU) 47.1%
Garrett Franken (DOR) 46.8%
3PT FG% (Min 75% of games played and 1.5 3PT FG per game)