Men's College Basketball

NJCAA Division II Tournament: Team Capsules

John Wood Community College's Cory Miller is guarded by North Central Missouri's Soloman Thomas during a game at the Student Activity Center in Quincy on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. | H-W Photo/Jake Shane
Jake Shane 1|
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Mar. 18, 2019 12:01 am

No. 1 seed Kirkwood. Where: Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Record: 27-4. Notes: Sophomore Doug Wilson, who will play next year at South Dakota State, leads Eagles at 20.8 ppg. Four other players average at least 9.6 points. The Eagles average 88.1 ppg, ranking 22nd in Division II. Kirkwood won Division II titles in 198 and 2016, placed second in 2005, 2006 and 2009. Kirkwood beat John Wood 82-63 in Quincy and 86-70 at home.

No. 2 seed Johnson County. Where: Overland Park, Kan. Record: 28-4. Notes: Ten Cavaliers average 10 points per game, and 11 average at least four points. Nick Larkin leads the team at 13.6 ppg, and Xavier Womack averages 13.4 ppg. Johnson County lost 80-76 to John Wood on Nov. 9 in Quincy. The Cavaliers won Division II titles in 2001 and 2009. They allow 65.6 ppg, fourth-best in Division II.

No. 3 seed Pima. Where: Tucson, Ariz. Record: 26-6. Notes: Abram Carrasco averages 20.8 points per game and is the top player back for last year's Division II runners-up. Five players average in double figures. Aztecs coach Brian Peabody was forced out of his job in 2004 when the school's chancellor told him he could not recruit anyone except high school players from southern Arizona. Peabody was re-hired in 2013, and five of his top players are from Tucson-area schools. The Aztecs average 97.3 ppg, sixth-best in Division II.

No. 4 seed Erie. Where: Williamsville, N.Y. Record: 25-4. Notes: Erie earned an at-large bid after losing to Niagara County 72-69 in the District 2 Region 3 final. Erie's coach is Alex Nwora, and his son, Jordan, is the leading scorer and rebounder for the Louisville men's basketball team. Five players score in double figures, led by sophomore guard Michael Motley (14.9 ppg). The Katz average 94.5 ppg, eighth-best in Division II.

No. 5 seed Milwaukee Area Tech. Where: Milwaukee, Wis. Record: 28-5. Notes: The Stormers are making their first national tournament appearance. They upset No. 2 seed Moraine Valley and No. 1 seed South Suburban in the Distrct 3 Region 4A tournament to advance to Danville. Milwaukee Tech averages 101.7 points per game, tops in Division II, with seven players scoring at least 8.2 ppg. Shannon Sanford Jr., a transfer from Wisconsin-Whitewater, leads the team at 21.1 ppg.

No. 6 seed St. Clair County. Where: Port Huron, Mich. Record: 27-6. Notes: The Skippers lost their last three games of the season, then rebounded to win the District 10 Region 12B title. Omari Duncan, a 6-4 freshman, leads the team at 18.1 ppg and 8.3 rpg. St. Clair Coumty averages 84.5 ppg, 42nd best in Division II.

No. 7 seed Dakota County Tech. Where: Rosemount, Minn. Record: 26-5. Notes: The Blue Knights have five players averaging between 12.0 and 14.7 points, with 6-4 sophomore Cody Sticha averaging 14.7 ppg and 4.7 rpg, and 6-3 sophomore Jerimiah Coddon averaging 13.8 ppg, 6.5 rpg and 5.3 assists per game. Dakota County is making its fourth straight appearance in the Division II tournament but has won only one game. Dakota County averages 86.6 points, 30th best in Division II.

No. 8 seed Wake Tech. Where: Raleigh, N.C. Record: 20-11. Notes: Wake Tech lost twice to Guilford during regular season but won 108-92 in the District 14 Region 10 final. Christian Anumihe, a 6-5 sophomore, leads Division II in rebounding at 14.6 per game. Koraan Clemonts, a 6-2 sophomore, averages 19.9 points per game, and 6-4 freshman Jaren Ellerbe adds 18.4 ppg. The Eagles, coached by Adam Wainwright, average 89.2 ppg, 18th best in Division II. They placed fourth in their only other national tournament appearance in 2014.

No. 9 seed Niagara County. Where: Sanborn, N.Y. Record: 26-8. Notes: The Thunderwolves are coached by Bill Beilein, the nephew of John Beilein, the head coach at the University of Michigan. Niagara County had lost to Erie three times earlier this season before winning in the Division II Division 2 finals. The Thunderwolves average 89.8 points, 15th best in the nation, and have nine players scoring at least 5 ppg. Fode Camara, a 6-6 sophomore, leads the team at 13.8 ppg and 8.2 rpg.

No. 10 seed Lakeland. Where: Kirtland, Ohio. Record: 25-6. Notes: The Lakers won just 17 games in the previous two seasons. Freshman Tyreke Johnson leads the team at 16.3 ppg and 5.9 rpg, while 6-foot-8, 230-pound Rob Brown adds 12.5 points and 5.8 rebounds. The Lakers average 86 ppg, 33rd best in Division II.

No. 12 seed Ancilla. Where: Donaldson, Ind. Record: 22-9. Notes: The Chargers lost their last two games of the regular season but rebounded to win the District 9 Region 12 title. Two victories during the regular season were later forfeited. Ancilla averages 91.6 ppg, 13th best in Division II. TySean Sheppard, a 6-3 sophomore, leads the team at 21 points and 12.6 rebounds per game.

No. 13 seed Morton. Where: Cicero, Ill. Record: 21-12. Notes: The Panthers are in the Division II field for the first time since 2009 after beating 17th-ranked Bryant and Stratton for the Region 15 title. They had a 12-12 record before winning nine straight games to end the season. Tyrone Rhivers, a 5-11 freshman, leads Morton at 16.1 ppg. The Panthers allow just 68.7 ppg, ninth best in Division II.

No. 14 seed Cecil. Where: North East, Md. Record: 21-11. Notes: Seven players average at least 6.6 points per game, with sophomore Cornell Corbin leading the way at 13.3 ppg. The Seahawks started the season losing eight of their first 10 games, but they've closed with 15 victories in their last 16 games. They knocked off Potomac State, the No. 1-ranked team in the final national poll, in the Region 20 tournament.

No. 15 seed Pitt. Where: Winterville, N.C. Record: 23-8. Notes: Pitt has lost three times this season to Wake Tech but still earned an at-large bid. The Bulldogs are making the first trip to the Division II tournament in school history. Eight players average at least five points per game, with 6-4 freshman Reginald Clark averaging 13.7 ppg and 6-4 sophomore Ben Cox adding 12.9 ppg and 7.7 rpg.

No. 16 seed North Central Missouri. Where: Trenton, Mo. Record: 18-12. Notes: It's the first time for the Pirates to make the trip to Danville. Soloman Thomas, a 5-9 sophomore, leads the team at 13.7 ppg, and 6-5 sophomore Cameron Lockett adds 13.1 ppg and 6.4 rpg. John Wood defeated North Central Missouri 83-67 on Nov. 3.

--David Adam