Stillman To Meet Keiser in NAIA Round of 32

Men’s Basketball – Fri, Mar. 12, 2021

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – A buzzer-beater opened the 2021 NAIA Men’s Basketball National Championships Opening Round Friday night, as Keiser University knocked off defending NAIA champion Georgetown College, 58-56, in Montgomery Bracket A.

No. 1 seed Stillman College, ranked No. 14 in the NAIA, will now meet three-seed Keiser in the Round of 32 at the NAIA Opening Round on Saturday, March 13 at 5 p.m. at Faulkner University’s Tine W. Davis Gymnasium (5345 Atlanta Hwy, Montgomery, AL 36109).

TICKETS | VIDEO | LIVE STATS | STATS COMPARISON | NAIA DAY 1 RECAP

“Keiser is one of the hottest teams in the tournament right now,” said John Teasley, Stillman College head coach. “That’s a good solid basketball team we’re fixing to play. I think we match up well. I think this game is going to come down to whoever has the best guard play. Hopefully it will be us. They’re very good in transition. They move the basketball. They attack the rim. They play hard. We have to match their energy and intensity. If we do that, we’ll be fine. That’s going to be the key.”

The game has all the makings for a suspenseful finish, as CoreVon Lott hit a turnaround jumper at the buzzer to give Keiser a win in the NAIA First Round, two weeks after he hit a floater with :01 left to beat St. Thomas, 72-71, in the Sun Conference Championship game. Stillman has also had its share of excitement this season, with Devin Merriweather hitting a buzzer-beater to send the game into overtime at William Carey in mid-February, and then hitting a buzzer-beater to defeat No. 16 Loyola at home on Feb. 19. Ladarius Carter followed with a 3-pointer with :15 left to beat Loyola in the Southern States Athletic Conference semifinals Feb. 26 and missed a 3 at the buzzer that could have sent the SSAC Championship into overtime on Feb. 27.
 

Stillman is making its seventh national tournament appearance and fourth NAIA Tournament appearance in four years. Stillman (16-3), which was 3-3 in three NCAA DII Tournaments, is looking for its first win in an NAIA Tournament. Unlike past seasons, this is the first time the NAIA Men’s Basketball Championships opens on host campuses with a Round of 48 and Round of 32 Opening Round. The final 16 teams will meet in Kansas City, Missouri, March 18-23.

“It’s one of our goals every year, and we hope that the work we put in every year will get you there, and thank the good Lord, we’re here,” Teasley said. “It feels like a national tournament. Faulkner’s doing a good job. You can tell you’re in the national tournament.”

This will be Stillman’s first meeting against Keiser and first game this season against a team from The Sun Conference. Keiser is 2-1 against Southern States teams, defeating Mobile, 76-73, and William Carey, 76-69, in November before falling to Faulkner, 85-75 on Nov. 29. Stillman is 3-3 against NAIA Top 25 teams this season, while Keiser is 2-1 with a neutral-site loss to No. 13 LSU-Alexandria in Montgomery.

SSAC Co-Player of the Year Trey Petty leads Stillman with 18.63 points per game on 50.2% shooting, 6.84 rebounds per game and 1.68 steals per game. Devin Merriweather‘s 5.06 assists per game leads all players in Montgomery Bracket A. Roger Davis leads the Tigers with 1.47 blocks per game.

Keiser is led in scoring with 19 points per game from Lott, a First Team All-Sun Conference selection. Antwan Claxton averages 12.8 points per game and leads the Seahawks per game in rebounds (6.76), assists (3.24), steals (2.0) and blocked shots (0.52).

Following the Montgomery Bracket A game, seventh-ranked Faulkner University will meet Warner University at 7:30 p.m. in Montgomery Bracket B. Warner defeated Tennessee Wesleyan, 67-62, on March 12.

STILLMAN COLLEGE TIGERS (16-3)
Last 10 Games: 8-2
Streak: L1

Team Stats NAIA Rankings
#6 Offensive Rebounds per Game: 14.158
#13 3-point FG%: .392
#14 3-point FG% Defense: .303
#17 Rebounds per Game: 41.632
#23 Rebound Margin: 6.842
#28 FG% Defense: .415

Individual Stats NAIA Rankings
#22 3-point FG Made per game – Ladarius carter (3.158)
#22 Assists per game – Devin Merriweather (5.063)
#32 Offensive Rebounds per Game – Trey Petty (2.947)
#34 3-point FG Made per game – Trey Petty (2.947)
#46 3-point FG% – Trey Petty (.455)

2021 Southern States Athletic Conference Tournament Results
2/25/21: W, Brewton-Parker, 85-52
2/26/21: W, No. 16 Loyola, 63-62
2/27/21: L, No. 7 Faulkner, 67-64 (Championship)

NAIA History (0-2)
2020 – No Contest, COVID
2019 – L, No. 25 Oklahoma City, 101-84
2018 – L, No. 15 Indiana Southeast, 84-66 (NAIA DII)

NCAA DII Tournament History (3-3)
2016 (1-1)
W, West Georgia, 85-79
L, Alabama-Huntsville, 81-71 (Round of 32)

2011 (2-1)
W, Harding, 87-86 OT
W, Florida Southern, 92-86
L, Alabama-Huntsville, 86-81 (Regional Final, Round of 16)

2006 (0-1)
L, Delta State, 76-70

KEISER UNIVERSITY SEAHAWKS (21-9)

Last 10 Games: 9-1
Streak:  W5

Team Stats NAIA Rankings
#15 Free Throw %: .761
#17 Total Points: 2,233
#17 Total Offensive Rebounds: 1,053
#20 Total Steals: 201
#20 Total 3-pointers Made: 255

Individual Stats NAIA Rankings
#6 Total Steals – Antwan Claxton (58)
#8 Total 3-pointers Made – CoreVon Lott (78)
#10 Total Scoring – Corevon Lott (559)
#20 Assist/Turnover Ratio – Darius Bryant (3.3)
#24 Steals Per Game – Antwan Claxton (2.0)

2021 Sun Conference Tournament Results
2/23/21: W, Coastal Georgia, 87-73
2/26/21: W, Ave Maria, 79-62
2/27/21: W, St. Thomas, 72-71 (Championship)

NAIA History (13-11)
– Defeated Georgetown on March 12, 2021 for its first NAIA Tournament win since 2016, a Round of 16 win over No. 8 Cornerstone (Mich.), 93-79.
– Lost in the First Round (32 teams) of the NAIA DII Tournament to No. 6 Marian (Ind.), 71-61, on March 11, 2020, one day before the tournament was canceled.
– All-time Record in Round of 32 is 5-6.
– Advanced to the Round of 16 five times (2016, 2012, 2011, 2009, 2008), including a runner-up finish in 2012.

 

Men’s Basketball, Stillman College