SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – No. 1 seed College of Idaho scored the final six points, none bigger than a go-ahead three-pointer by Roosevelt Adams with 16 seconds remaining, lifting the Yotes to a 62-60 comeback win over No.5 Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.) in an epic second round match-up at the NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball National Championship.
A free throw by DWU Aaron Ahmadu gave the Tigers a seven-point lead (58-51) with three-minutes to go, much to the delight of heavily partisan Tigers crowd. Unfazed by the difficult odds, College of Idaho closed the game on a 11-2 run, using its go-to tenacious defense and just enough offense to earn the win.
The rally started with a free throw by Keun Palu-Thompson followed by a basket by Roosevelt Adams, who scored the final of his team-high 14 points to slice the deficit to 58-54. Nate Brunheel made it a two-point game later but DWU senior Jason Spicer made two free throws for the Tigers’ final points to put his team back up by four. Brunheel cut the deficit back to one on a three-point play with 41 seconds left and the Yotes stole the inbounds pass, setting up the final three-pointer by Adams. DWU missed on a last-second game winner.
College of Idaho shot 44% for the game and struggled from the arc, making 3-of-19 attempts (16%). Brunheel and Talon Pinckney both netted 12 points for the Yotes.
Jason Spicer closed his career with a masterful performance, scoring a game-high 28 points on a remarkable 13-of-19 shooting. Ty Hoglund had the hot hand from the perimeter, hitting a trio of three-pointers on his way to 13 points. Dakota Wesleyan ends the year with a 23-11 record.
College of Idaho improves to 29-6 and will play either No. 2 Indiana Tech or No. 6 Marian (Ind.) at 8pm on Saturday, March 10.