The Commercial-News, Danville, IL


March 21, 2013

Top seed Mott stays alive

DANVILLE — The defending national champions and top seeded coming into the NJCAA Division II national tournament, the Mott Bears found themselves in unfamiliar territory Wednesday as they faced the Iowa Lakes Lakers in consolation bracket play.

The Bears had advanced to the semi-finals in each of their previous eight tournament appearances and led by a game-high 20 points from Malik Albert, Mott won its first ever consolation bracket game and made some history with a 73-68 win over the Lakers.

Mott improves to 28-5 all time in tournament play, which is the most wins and best winning percentage in tournament history. It was a huge bounce back game for Albert who shot 5-for-7 from the field and 8-of-9 from the free throw line following a 1-for-17 shooting performance in Mott’s opening game loss to Central Community College.

“We had to match the intensity of coach (Steve) Schmidt because you know he is going to bring 110 percent every time,” Albert said. “This was a major win for us. Being the number 1 seed we shouldn’t have lost the first game, and after we did, it wasn’t very difficult to get up for this game because we needed to redeem ourselves.”

As a team, the Bears shot 28-for-51 following a 24-for-76 performance in the opening game.

“I’ve been coaching 22 years and I cant explain what happened in the first game,” Schmidt said. “I had a heavy heart watching Malik struggle the way he did. I knew he would bounce back, that is what great players do.

“This was the 33rd game I have coached at the tournament and every one of them has been a special experience, including the loss yesterday. It was a humbling experience and I was waiting to see how we would bounce back because we have been inconsistent at times this season with our intensity. I am really happy we have the chance to stay in the tournament and compete.”

Mott also got 14 points from Devin Foster.

The Lakers end their season with a 26-8 record.

“We have a really good group of character guys who play hard and care about each other and I knew they would come out and play hard today,” said Iowa Lakes coach Troy Larson. “We had some looks around the basket that we weren’t able to finish, and you just can’t dig to deep a hole against a talented team that is bigger and more athletic than you are.”

The Lakers two losses were by a combined seven points.

“That is really a double edged sword,” Larson said. “I am very proud of our guys, but we didn’t come here just to compete. I’m sad I won’t have the chance to coach these guys anymore, but they fought very hard.”

The Lakers were led by 14 points each from Ben Shellim and Josh Schaben, with Deondre Parks and Kelly Madison adding 12 points each.

Iowa Lakes got out to a 14-5 lead and led 18-10 with ten minutes to go in the first half. The Bears would go on a 9-0 run to take their first lead at 19-18, but the Lakers would battle back and led 28-27 with four minutes to go.

A 12-0 Mott run to close out the half would send the Bears into halftime with a 39-28 lead. Mott would open the second half on an 8-0 run to take their largest lead of the game at 47-28.

“We really needed that run,” Schmidt said. “We pride ourselves on defense. We had never faced Iowa Lakes before, but we have had some epic battles with Iowa teams in the past, and they are another tremendous team from Iowa. I hate to see a great team like Iowa Lakes go out of the tournament after two games and we have nothing but respect for them, but it was good for our guys to grow up a bit in a physical hard fought game.”

The Lakers would cut the deficit to 60-56 with seven minutes to go and got within two at 64-62 with three minutes to go, but Iowa Lakes could get no closer.

“We talk a lot about the last five minutes of the first half and the first five minutes of the second half,” said Larson. “You just can’t allow a run like that against a quality team.”

Schmidt was pleased with the leadership he saw from sophomore Fred Mattison.

“I told Fred that we gotta have you to today and helped our freshman and everyone to keep their heads up, Schmidt said. “Devin Foster was a top 5 player coming out of Chicago who turned a corner today after an up and down season and Coreontae DeBerry showed flashes of the unique skill set he has. They all helped us get to game number 34.”

The Bears return to action Friday at 11 a.m. against an opponent to be determined.

Text Only
  • SPT- CN0419 - Bis-Henn Baseball photo 1 Taylor slows Blue Devils BISMARCK -- After a perfect game from Ross Learnard on Tuesday, the Salt Fork baseball team received another outstanding pitching performance on Friday from Cole Taylor, who struck out nine and allowed only one hit over five innings as the Storm beat

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - CN0419 - Danville softball photo 1 Danville blasts three homers to beat Westville WESTVILLE -- Danville coach Corey Pullin knew it was just a matter of time until junior Alissa Peelman and sophomore Lindsey Lowenstein started seeing positive results at the plate. On Friday afternoon, the duo of Peelman and Lowenstein gave the Viki

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • Danville girls track wins Raider Invitational BLOOMINGTON -- The Danville girls track team picked up four wins as they were able to beat the pack at the Lady Raider Invitational on Friday. Sadie Elliott won the 3,200 in 11 minutes, 51.75 seconds for Danville, while Aariona Graham won the long ju

    April 19, 2014

  • Friday's Local Scores PREP BASEBALL At Bismarck Salt Fork 15, Bismarck-Henning 0 Salt Fork 040 0(11) -- 15 14 0 Bis-Henn 000 0 0 -- 0 1 8 WP -- Cole Taylor. LP -- Dustyn Ingram. Two or more hits -- SF: Ross Learnard 3, Max Stutsman 3, Garrett McFadden, Lane West

    April 19, 2014

  • SPT- Cn0418 - Covington softball photo 2 Trojans cruise to victory COVINGTON, Ind. - The Covington softball team had a big first inning as they scored five runs on their way to defeating Attica 11-1. Attica threatened to score in the first, getting Karrah Pattengale to second, but they were unable to drive her home.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lunger steps up for Buffaloes GEORGETOWN -- In only the second start of his career, Georgetown-Ridge Farm/Chrisman pitcher Tyler Lunger pitched a five-hit complete game as the Buffaloes defeated Milford 8-2 on Thursday in Vermilion Valley Conference action. "I feel I threw well

    April 18, 2014

  • SPT - CN0418 - Danville boys tennis photo Maroons blitz young Vikings DANVILLE -- In the process of gaining experience, the Danville boys tennis team has taken a few lumps in the first few weeks of season. On Thursday afternoon, the Champaign Central Maroons delivered a few lessons to the younger Vikings with a 9-0 vic

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Peelman pitches no-hitter as Vikings beat Maroons CHAMPAIGN -- Alissa Peelman pitched a no-hitter as the Danville High School softball team beat Champaign Central 11-0 in five innings on Thursday in Big 12 Conference action. Peelman was also 3-of-4 with three RBIs for the Vikings while Mackenzie Kin

    April 18, 2014

  • Thursday's Local Scores PREP BASEBALL At Georgetown Georgetown-Ridge Farm/Chrisman 8, Milford 2 Milford 101 000 0 -- 2 5 10 GRFC 200 141 x -- 8 8 3 WP -- Tyler Lunger. LP -- Clayton Rieches. Two or more hits -- GRFC: Dylan Bina, Ethan Silva. 2B

    April 18, 2014

  • SPT - CN0417 - Andy Bott photo Better late than never for Bott BISMARCK -- Marshall golf coach Matt Grobe completely surprised Bismarck-Henning standout Andy Bott with an e-mail earlier this year. Bott, who is a three-time all-stater for the Blue Devils, was preparing to attend Illinois Wesleyan in the fall. "Ou

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

NCAA basketball
NJCAA Tourney Photos 2014

Check out the action at the NJCAA Division II National Men's Basketball Tournament March 18-22 at DACC. Buy photos from the Commercial-News here:

Must Read
AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
NDN Video
Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station My name is Cocaine Lohan Gets Candid About Her Sex List The 2014 New York Auto Show Meet Johnny Manziel's New Girlfriend Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy Funny: Celebrating Easter with Martha Stewart and Friends Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Man hit with $525 federal fine after he doesn't pay for soda refill Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper New West, Texas Explosion Video Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday Don't Be A Tattletale: Bad Bullying Tips For Students The trillest thoughts on marijuana "RHOA" Star Charged With Battery Grizzly Bears Get Snowy Birthday Party Weatherman draws forecast when another technical glitch strikes WGN