William Penn to Meet #7 Mount Mercy with League Supremacy on Line
Oskaloosa–For the second time in 22 days, the second-ranked Statesmen basketball team will take the Mount Mercy Mustangs in a top-ten Midwest Collegiate Conference battle.
The NAIA’s Men’s Basketball Game of the Week will be in Oskaloosa Saturday as William Penn (25-1, 9-0 MCC) faces #7 Mount Mercy (23-3, 8-1 MCC) in Penn Gymnasium at 3 p.m. The game will be broadcast (video and audio) on the internet at http://vp.telvue.com/player?s=wpenn
The last time the programs met, the Statesmen held off the Mustangs 92-87 in Cedar Rapids on January 19.
The teams held the exact rankings last time around as well. In a matchup that featured 73 free throws, William Penn had several more chances, finishing 29-of-43. The squad was outshot 50.8%-43.9%, but held a 51-32 rebounding edge, leading to a 25-16 margin in second-chance points. The contest had 18 ties and eight lead changes.
William Penn has a decided edge in this series over the past ten years, leading 15-9. The Statesmen will have to break a recent trend, though, as the road team has had the upper hand during this stretch. William Penn is 9-3 in Cedar Rapids, while Mount Mercy is 6-5 in Oskaloosa.
With Saturday’s victory, the navy and gold will clinch a share of the regular season title and claim the #1 seed for the MCC Tournament (two game lead with two games to play).
William Penn Profile
Winners of 11 in a row, William Penn’s only loss this season came against then-#19 Bellevue on December 7, 82-71.
The Statesmen, who have five players in double figures, are led by Brandon Beasley (Sr., Indianapolis, Ind., Physical Education) with 18.8 points and 8.2 rebounds per outing. The navy and gold are outshooting foes 48.0%-39.6% and outrebounding them 48.2-37.7.
William Penn ranks high nationally in numerous categories, including topping NAIA Division II in nine categories. The team is most notably the best in scoring average (97.1), rebounding average (48.2), scoring margin (+24.5), total assists (541), and three-pointers per game (11.6).
Individually, two players rank in the top ten in NAIA Division II. Taylor Stoutner (Jr., Keota, Iowa, Physical Education) is fifth in the nation in both three-pointers per game (3.3) and total three-pointers (87), while Blake Walker is eighth in both assist average (5.5) and total assists (142).
The Statesmen are 11-0 at home this winter, including defeating AIB 91-48 Wednesday.
Mount Mercy Profile
The Mustangs, winners of four in a row, have lost their three games by a combined seven points.
Chad Underwood is pacing the team with 17.1 points per game, while Lamar Wall is next with a 16.6 scoring average. Underwood leads NAIA Division II with a 49.5% three-point clip.
As a team, Mount Mercy is third nationally in three-point percentage (40.8%), seventh in scoring margin (+17), and ninth in scoring (84.3). The Mustangs are outshooting opponents 48.5%-40.1% and outrebounding them 40.8-35.8.