Thunder Win Southwest Region Title

Manhattan, KS - The Manhattan Christian College Men's Basketball team entered the week on a quest to secure an automatic bid to the NCCAA II National Tournament by winning the Southwest Region gauntlet. On Saturday, they delivered by knocking off #4 seeded Randall University in overtime by the score of 88-73. The game was a closesly contested affair throughout the entire first half as MCC held only a one point lead at halftime, 33-32. After a poor shooting first half from beyond the arc, the Thunder were able to knock the lid off the basket on a pair of long balls from senior Chelvin Webb. Over the course of the next several minutes the Thunder were able to build their lead to as much as 11 points with twelve minutes to play. The Saints, however, would not go quietly into the night and answered with their own run taking a four point lead with just under 4 minutes to go. The game would go back and forth and come to a tie over the next several minutes before MCC had the ball and a chance to take the lead with 45 seconds to play. After a missed three point shot with twelve seconds left the Saints would have one last try for the win, but would turn the ball over leading to overtime. 

In overtime, senior Payton Stephens, came out like a man on fire nailing a turnaround jump shot from about 15 feet and then answering with a steal and another basket on a Jordan White assist on the next possession. The Thunder would go on to score twenty-one points in the extra frame to secure the victory and the 2020 NCCAA II SW Region Championship. Stephens led all scorers with 25 points and hauled in 15 rebounds. Chelvin Webb dropped 23 points and came up with three big steals. Jordan White added 17 while Gabe Awbrey had 10 and Nate Awbrey added 8. This is the sixth region championship in school history and will be the 16th national tournament appearance in school history. 

MCC will play in the 2020 NCCAA II National Tournament in Joplin, Mo. March 12-14. Seeds and game times will be released in the coming days. 

MCC Scoreboard

2/29/2020 | Mens Basketball No. 4 Randall University | W, 88-73 (OT)
2/28/2020 | Mens Basketball No. 3 Arlington Baptist College | W, 94-86 
2/26/2020 | Mens Basketball vs. No. 7 Ozark Christian College | W, 89-72 
2/22/2020 | Mens Basketball No. 2 Barclay College | W, 91-80 
2/21/2020 | Womens Basketball No. 6 Faith Baptist Bible College | L, 67-62