It’s days like last night and again tonight where there are so many great games going on that it honestly rivals the D1 games on ESPN where it’s tough to decide which game you actually want to watch or you have to flip back and forth between games. Or you can just have three screens going on at the same time. Either way, I think that USAO Head Coach, Chris Francis, said it best in his tweet last night. This may be the BEST I have ever seen the NAIA. The NAIA is as deep and as talented as it has ever been! The great part for us fans is that we also have SO much youth across the NAIA, that many of these teams and players are going to be around for a few more years yet!
– Games of the Day Recap – Men’s
- #13 Grace 83 #1 Saint Francis 69
- Grace put together one of the best 1st halves of basketball, on both ends of the floor, that you will see this season. The effort gave the Lancers a 49-23 lead heading into the break. However, Saint Francis wasn’t going to pack it in without a fight though. And fight is what they did in the 2nd half as the Cougars, who were once down 30, closed the gap to 11 at one point. However, they had no answer for Frankie Davidson. The nations leading scorer posted a 35pt outing to give him three straight 30+ point games. This is back to back huge wins for this Lancer program. While life in the Crossroads League is never easy, they have put themselves in a great position moving forward!
- #18 Morningside 79 – RV Concordia (NE) 77
- What a game this was last night! Morningside punched CUNE in the mouth early getting up by as much as 13pts. However, this CUNE team has no quit in them and were able to close the gap to 8 at half and then went on a big 2nd half run to go up five points with a couple minutes left in the game. Morningside though, would make the plays needed though to ultimately pull out the win. Trey Brown was doing Trey Brown type of things again as he went for 20pts including scoring the game winning bucket with 2 seconds left. That last bucket moved Brown into 13th place on the All-Time Scoring list at Morningside. Morningside is now the lone unbeaten team in the GPAC. While Concordia moves into a tie for second place.
– Other Notable Games:
- #3 William Penn won their 11th straight Toilet Paper game over Grand View last night.
- After last night only 11 unbeatens remain. One of those is Culver-Stockton who got a big Heart win over MidAmerica Nazarene last night to have the best start in program history. They head to #3 William Penn on Saturday in a game of unbeatens.
– A team that is trying to have a say in the CCAC Title race?!? How about IU Northwest, who last night got another nice win! They have now won 3 straight games and have wins over two of the top three teams in the CCAC standings.
– Top Performers:
- Frankie Davidson, Grace, 35pts, 6rebs in win over #1 Saint Francis
- Chanze Cruesoe, William Penn, 12pts, 10reb, 10asst Triple-Double in win over Grand View.
- Antwaan Cushingberry, Saint Francis, 23pts, 9rebs, 5assts in loss to #13 Grace.
- Isaac Clay, St Andrews, 31pts, 5rebs, 4assts, 5stls in loss to Johnson (TN).
- Coby Jones, Johnson (TN), 35pts, 8rebs, 3assts in win over St Andrews.
- Christian Rodriguez, Cornerstone, 29pts, 4rebs, 5assts in loss to Governors St.
- Tim Cameron, Central Methodist, 15pts, 12rebs, 4assts, 4stls in loss to Evangel.
- Dedoch Chan, Peru St., 32pts, 12rebs, 3assts of the bench in a loss to Mount Mercy.
- Keith Johnson, Clarke, 34pts, 9rebs in win over Graceland.
- Carson Newman, Graceland, 34pts 8rebs 4stls in loss to Clarke.
- Grant Smith, Indiana Tech, career high 30pts, 5rebs, 5assts in win over UM Dearborn.
– Women’s Games of the Day Recap:
- #10 Morningside 89 – #25 Concordia (NE) 83
- As we mentioned yesterday, this was quite the NAIA double header last night in Sioux City. However the Mustangs did come away with the home sweep. The Mustang women got the night started with a nice win over a very tough CUNE squad. Morningside was able to get out to an early lead and while the game was pretty evenly matched for the rest of the game, CUNE did go on a run in the 3rd quarter to take the lead. However, Morningside answered back with an 8-2 run to end the quarter and held the Bulldogs at bay in the 4th. Morningside was led by Sierra Mitchell who had a game high 26pts. Lauren Baker had 24pts for CUNE in the loss.
- #12 Northwestern 70 – #20 Briar Cliff – 59
- Northwestern beat their 3rd Top 25 opponent of the season last night to remain unbeaten. Devyn Kemble would lead the Raiders with 18pts as she was a perfect 6-6 from the field. The Raiders used a big 2nd Quarter to take control of the game and then controlled the pace and played good defense, holding Briar Cliff to just 9pts in the 4th Quarter. Northwestern will now turn around and look for their 4th straight Top 25 win, as they face off with Concordia this weekend.
– Other Notable Games:
- #21 MVNU women came back from down 10 in the second half to beat Taylor.
- The newly ranked Bryan women remained undefeated as they go on the road to get another AAC win
– Top Performers:
- Halie Padgett, Milligan, 33pts, 13rebs in loss to CIU.
- Zion Neat, CIU, 32pts, 10rebs, 5assts in win over Milligan.
- Erika Foy, Indiana Tech, 15pts, 14rebs in win over UM Dearborn.
- Brooke Hammonds, Union, 24pts, 9rebs, 2assts, 3stls in win over Columbia (SC).
- Gracee Dishman, Bryan, 25pts, 8rebs in win over Truett McConnell.
- Grace Adams, Holy Cross, 22pts, 17rebs, 5assts in win over Roosevelt.
– Big Plays:
- There are more video of Grace above, but have we mentioned yet how good Frankie Davidson is?! Kid is just a Sophomore too!
- Speaking of Sophomores, William Penn has one that is starting to blossom in Chanze Cruesoe. Watch this block and alley oop from the Sophomore Point Guard!
- Grant Smith putting on a show during his career high 30pts performance last night.