*** NJCAA DIVISION ONE ***
FINAL FOUR, FIRST BERTH – The 6th seeded EASTERN FLORIDA STATE TITANS and the Cinderella 14 seeds – the MOTLOW COLLEGE BUCKS – played one of the oddest games of this year’s tournament.
The opening Half was a low-scoring defensive epic and ended with the Titans holding a 25-20 lead over the Bucks. After the break Eastern Florida State continued to smother the Motlow College offense but their own offense burst free, ultimately winning the game by a final count of 65-45. Twenty-eight points from Ahmed Ali led the Titans to victory.
FINAL FOUR, SECOND BERTH – The two teams fighting for this slot in the 2017 Final Four were the 4th seeded HUTCHINSON COLLEGE BLUE DRAGONS and the 5th seeded ODESSA COLLEGE WRANGLERS.
The Blue Dragons pulled off a classic comeback as they fell behind the Wranglers by SEVENTEEN POINTS in the 1st Half. By the break Hutchinson College was on top 40-34 and went on to defeat Odessa College by a nailbiting 89-86. Shakur Juiston notched a Double Double for the Blue Dragons with 23 points and 16 rebounds.
FINAL FOUR, THIRD BERTH – This Instant Classic pitted the 2 seeds – the SOUTH PLAINS COLLEGE TEXANS against the 7th seeded VINCENNES UNIVERSITY TRAILBLAZERS.
The Texans had fallen behind the Trailblazers by a tight 33-32 as Halftime arrived. From there this battle royal continued, and in the end South Plains College emerged with a 69-67 triumph. Jordan Branger tossed in 19 points to lead the Texans.
FINAL FOUR, LAST BERTH – The final vacancy for 2017 was fought over by the 8th seeded NORTHWEST FLORIDA STATE RAIDERS and the top seeded SAN JACINTO CENTRAL COLLEGE RAVENS.
Despite the top seed getting bounced there was not a lot of drama in this game as the Raiders led the Ravens 46-32 by the midpoint and stayed on top for an authoritative 98-82 victory. Northwest Florida State’s Daryl Edwards led the way for the Raiders with his 25 points.