Garner sets three-point mark in NCCAA tourney loss to SCU

MACU Sports
Levi Convirs, Sports Information Director

McPherson, Kan. – Mid-America Christian University senior guard Olajuwon Garner hit four threes to give him a school single-season record 109, but it wasn’t enough as the Evangels’ season came to an end in an 87-73 loss to the Southwestern Christian University Eagles in the quarterfinals of the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) Central Regional tournament today (Mar. 9) at Central Christian College in McPherson, Kan.

Garner’s 109 treys breaks the previous record set by Willie Johnson in the 2005-06 season.

“Olajuwon worked really hard on his jumper throughout the season and that showed,” MACU head coach Josh Gamblin said.

“He came in a really good shooter and worked himself into a great shooter.”

The Eagles were in control from the outset, jumping out to a 10-2 lead and extended the edge throughout the half to lead 49-27 at the break.

SCU then opened the second half with the first 10 points to stretch the lead to a game-high 32 points, but the Evangels fought back as a three-point play by Robert Romero finished a 35-14 burst that made it an 11-point game of 73-62 with still 8:30 left.

But two free throws each by Casey Cole and Shawn Scott pushed the lead back to 15 and the Eagles held off the Evangels from there, maintaining at least a 12-point edge the rest of the way.

Ex’Zavia Seaton led the Evangels with a career-high tying 17 points and Malcolm Mann had a team-high eight rebounds.

Garner and Devonse Reed each scored 14, while Keyshawn Perkins dished out a team-best five assists and tied his career-high with seven rebounds.

Scott paced the Eagles (19-12) with 34 points, 12 boards and five assists, with Joshua Simmons also recording a double-double of 17 points and 10 boards.

Marvin White scored 15 and Jamal Ray chipped with 11 points for SCU.

The Evangels, who captured their first-ever NAIA National Championship last year in Gamblin’s first season at the helm, finish the 2016-17 campaign at 16-16 overall.

“Obviously the results were not what we wanted this season,” Gamblin said. “We lost so many close ball games and that was extremely tough.”

“However, I was very proud of their ability to bounce back and always compete. They were a blessing to me and my family. I can’t wait to continue to watch their growth, culminating with many of them graduating in May.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *