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Dramatic overtime win sends Eagles to the final four

By Keith Norem
On March 17, 2016

The Kirkwood men’s basketball team knew they were in for a fight with Louisburg Community College in the elite eight.  The two teams had almost the same record and the teams played a lot alike.

Both teams are talented and both are well coached so it was no surprise that the two teams were deadlocked after regulation and needed overtime to decide the fate of their futures.

The Eagles were behind by two points at halftime, 35-37, and could only outscore LCC by the same 37-35 score in the second half.  Overtime was a different story.  The depth of the Eagles prevailed as they went on a 15-9 run to earn a spot in the final four of the national tournament.

Many factors come into play in close games and this one was no different. KCC’s bench outscored LCC’s bench by 10 (27-17). That was the difference in the game according to the NJCAA tournament statistics and KCC’s basketball webpage.

The Eagles were led in scoring by Nick Richards who collected 22 points.  As has become a pattern for Kirkwood, there were four others in double figures as well. Off the bench Byron Harp scored 15, Hunter Rhoades added 14, Da’Rion King added 11 and Jacob Olson chipped in 10.

The Eagles will be facing Essex County Community College in the final four with a place in the finals on the line.  ECCC upset the number two seeded Lansing Community College team earlier in the day on Wednesday.

The showdown for the Finals is scheduled to start Friday at 7 p.m. on the Danville Area Community College campus who is the host for the NJCAA Division two national championships.

The finals will be held Saturday at 8 p.m. for the two teams left standing after tomorrows show down.

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