BU claims MCAC championship with 112-72 win over York

BU claims MCAC championship with 112-72 win over York

BELLEVUE, Neb. -- Senior Jelani Johnson led seven Bruins in double figures with 22 points as the Bellevue University men's basketball team claimed the Midlands Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament championship with a 112-72 victory over York College Saturday night at the Gordon Lozier Athletic Center. 

The Bruins (27-5) claimed their third-straight MCAC Tournament title with the victory and earned the league's automatic berth into the NAIA Division II Men's Basketball National Championship. York ended its season with a 16-16 record. 

The selections and pairings for the national tournament will be announced on Wednesday, Feb. 29. Bellevue qualified for its 10th-straight and 13th overall appearance in the national tournament.

Johnson added five rebounds, four assists, and two steals in the victory. Richard Shepherd and James Parrott finished with 14 points apiece. Jeremy Arrington collected 13 points, while hitting 3-of-4 3-pointers. Ousseynou Diop recorded his team-leading seventh double-double of the season with 12 points and 16 rebounds, while adding six blocks. Blake Zamudio and Derrick Davis also added 12 points each. 
Three-straight 3-pointers by Arrington fueled a 14-2 Bruin run, giving BU a 21-6 advantage at the 15-minute mark of the first half. 

The Bruins hit their first eight 3-pointers of the game while taking a commanding 43-14 lead at the midway point of the opening half. 

Bellevue was 9-of-13 from 3-point range in the first period as the Bruins scored a season-high 64 first-half points while gaining a 64-33 halftime advantage. 

Three Bruins were in double figures by halftime with Johnson leading the way with 16. Shepherd added 14 and Arrington scored 11 before intermission. Diop contributed five points, five blocks, and nine rebounds in the first half. 

The Panthers went on a 6-0 run in the beginning of the second half to close the gap to 24 points at 68-44 with 16 minutes left in the contest. York never got closer the remainder of the game as the Bruins shot 53.9 percent from the field while cruising to the 112-72 victory. Bellevue hit 10-of-22 3-pointers while scoring a season-high 112 points.