August 5, 2015

College of the Ozarks pulls off major upset in opening round of NAIA D-II men’s national tournament. Women play this morning at 8:30

College of the Ozarks men advance to the 2nd round. (photo/NAIA)

College of the Ozarks men advance to the 2nd round. (photo/NAIA)

College of the Ozarks pulled off the biggest upset of day one at the NAIA Division II National Championship as they knocked off the No. 2 seed College of Idaho 88-84 Wednesday night in the first round, held on the Bobcats home court in Point Lookout, Mo.

Ozarks shot nearly 61% of its field goals while making 31-51 shots and the Bobcats made 13-20 field goals in the second half. Alex Santiago scored a game high 24 points for the Bobcats and was one of four players in double figures for Ozarks. Nathane Simniok added 17 points and had 12 rebounds with two blocked shots. Santiago and Simniok combined to go 15-17 from the field.

Ozarks, as the host school of this event, is guaranteed a spot in the tournament.  The Bobcats are making their 18th appearance in the National Championship and improved its first round record to 11-7. This is the second year in a row they beat a heavily favored team.  Last year, they topped No. 3 seed Northwood (Fla.) last season.

Ozarks is now 22-10 and will face Bethel (Ind.) on Friday, March 14 at 7:30 pm. College of Idaho bows out of the field with a 28-6 record.

In day two of the first, the No. 7 College of the Ozarks women (23-9) face No. 2 Saint Xavier (Ill.) (27-5), at 8:30 a.m., Thursday morning.

Story courtesy of NAIA.org