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NIACC men drop a close one to Iowa Central, 98-93

MASON CITY, Iowa – NIACC’s men’s basketball team was derailed by weak side offensive rebounds in a 98-93 overtime loss to Iowa Central on Saturday.

The Trojans (14-15 overall, 5-8 in the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference) gave up an offensive rebound and a layup in three straight possessions in the final two-and-half minutes of overtime.  They also couldn’t get shots to fall by going 1-of-8 from the field during overtime.

NIACC’s only basket in the second half came off an offensive put back by Dominique Wright (Fr., Colorado Springs, CO).  Wright was one of five Trojans to finish in double figure scoring with 17 points.

Chris Davis (Fr., Colorado Springs, CO) was NIACC’s leading scorer with 20, and Chris Throne (So., Lake Mills, IA) had 19 points.  Nate Brandt (Fr., Burlington, WI) had 13 points, led NIACC in rebounds with seven, and had six assists.  Kendall Brown (So., Des Moines, IA) added 11 points and eight assists.

Duke Reed was Iowa Central’s (21-9, 8-5) top scorer with 27 points and also had 16 rebounds.   Triton post player Marc Musungayi had 20 points in and 11 rebounds.  Javonte Young scored 19 points, including a critical four points in overtime.

NIACC forced 23 turnovers in the game, but didn’t force one in overtime. The Trojans had a 19-3 advantage in points off turnovers, but the Tritons negated that by outscoring NIACC 42-24 in the paint.  Musunguyi had 18 points in the second half and overtime to help Iowa Central gain control in that stat.

Iowa Central also held a 52-33 rebound edge over NIACC.

NIACC had a chance to put away the Tritons at the end of regulation when tied at 88, but a three-point attempt by Davis three seconds left was off the mark, and sent the game into the extra period.

After a pair of free throws for NIACC by Brandt and a basket for Iowa Central by Reed to start overtime, Iowa Central got four points from Young and Musungayi to put them over the edge.  Young tipped in a basket off a missed shot by Reese Elliot to make it 92-90.

On the next possession, Musungayi was untouched in grabbing a board off a missed layup by Elliot.  He then banked it in from under the basket.  Young finished the deciding 6-0 run on the next Triton possession after grabbing a mishandled rebound from Brandt and scoring on a layup.

With NIACC’s offense frozen, six points was too much to make up.  Iowa Central was able to control the game the rest of the way.

The game was tight over much of the game and most of the second half, with neither team getting a lead larger than six in the final 10 minutes.  The teams swapped the lead six times in the second half.

NIACC shot 58 percent in the first half (21-for-36), but couldn’t build a lead because Iowa Central was able to get to the free throw line.  Iowa Central shot 9-of-10 at the line, while NIACC was 0-for-3.  NIACC led 50-47 at the break.

In the second half, NIACC led by as many as eight early on, but couldn’t stop the Triton offense.  Iowa Central shot 20-for-36 in the second half and overtime.

NIACC will host Ellsworth on Wednesday night at 7:30 p.m.  Ellsworth is currently second in the ICCAC with a 9-3 conference record.  NIACC won the earlier meeting with the Panthers 108-103 in double overtime.

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