2016 NCAA Div. III tournament qualifier
LAMONI—A basket with 12 seconds remaining was the difference as the Central College men’s basketball team dropped its season opener to Graceland Univ. 79-78 Monday night.
The NAIA Yellowjackets, already playing their sixth game, got the gamewinner from Jewel Carter, who erupted for 38 points with seven rebounds. He was 14-of-26 from the floor and hit five 3-point goals. Central (0-1) had taken a 78-77 lead on a basket by guard Miguel Ley (senior, San Antonio, Texas, Judson HS) with 37 seconds remaining. But after Carter’s bucket, two Central shot attempts failed in the final 12 seconds.
Graceland (4-2) led at intermission 44-41 but Central started the second half with an 18-6 burst for a 59-50 lead with 13 minutes remaining. Graceland knotted the score at 61-61 at the 10-minute mark and it was tight the rest of the way.
Central outshot Graceland 46.2 percent to 44.6 and held a 47-35 rebounding advantage, but committed 23 turnovers.
Ley had 21 points and six assists for the Dutch. Center Loren Liming (senior, Ames, Gilbert HS) posted a double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds, forward James Chapline (junior, Ogden) had 13 points and six boards, guard Mark Holan (senior, Fontanelle, Nodaway Valley HS) had 12 points and six rebounds while center Zach Cooper (senior, Johnston) had six points with a game-high 13 rebounds.
Central makes its home debut Wednesday, taking on Bethany Lutheran College (Minn.). The Vikings were hammered by St. Olaf (Minn.) Monday night, 90-50. Central defeated Bethany Lutheran at Pella last year 82-73 and holds a 3-1 lead in the teams’ all-time series.