COON RAPIDS—The Norsemen fell behind 45-36 by halftime and couldn’t rally Sunday in a 79-69 Region XIII Championship loss to Rochester.
Nataj Sanders led Mesabi Range with 16 points, while Mark Campbell II connected for 12 and Johnny Spencer added 11.
Despite the loss, Mesabi still has a chance at an at-large bid to the NJCAA Division III Men’s Basketball Tournament.
En route to the championship game, the Norse won their first playoff game since 2016-17 in the quarterfinals, a 74-52 win over Riverland. They also won their semifinal contest against St. Cloud Tech, 87-75. Mesabi finished with a 19-10 record.
Rochester, meanwhile, was paced by Kameron Givens with 29 points and Peyton Dunham added 14.
Mesabi Range 36 33—69
Rochester 45 34—79
MR: Glentrel Carter 2, Mark Campbell II 12, Kaeleb Roberts 7, Nataj Sanders 16, Ziaire Davis 9, Zion Sanford 8, Chris Rogers 4, Johnny Spencer 11. 3-pointers: Roberts 1, Davis 1, Sanford 2, Spencer 2. Free throws: 15-22. Total fouls: 24. Fouled out: Roberts.
RCTC: Quest McCrimon 10, Kameron Givens 29, Jacob Lotz 2, Andre Crockett 8, Peyton Dunham 14, Quincy Burland 12, Blue Smaller 2, Collin Bonow 2. 3-pointers: McCrimon 1, Givens 1, Crockett 2, Burland 1. Free throws: 18-27. Total fouls: 20. Fouled out: Lotz, Dunham.
Saturday’s Region XIII Semifinal Contest
Mesabi Range 87,
St. Cloud Tech 75
COON RAPIDS—Mesabi Range College used a strong second half to dunk St. Cloud Tech, 87-75 and advance to Sunday’s NJCAA Region XIII Championship.
The Norsemen got 19 points from Ziaire Davis, including five 3-pointers, 15 points from Kaeleb Roberts and 14 from Nataj Sanders to grab the semifinal victory. Mesabi Range’s Mark Campbell II also hit double digits with 11, while Chris Rogers chipped in with 10 points.
St. Cloud Tech was led by Semaj Threats with 18 points.
Mesabi Range took on the winner of Rochester vs. Anoka-Ramsey Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
SCTCC 33 42—75
Mesabi 34 53—87
SCTCC: Elijah Mead 12, Manni Ukutegbe 4, Semaj Threats 18, Ibn Khalid 13, Ty’Shawn Bryant 8, Reace Anders 3, Isaiah Foster 14, Mason Aohre 3. 3-pointers: Mead 4, Threats 1, Foster 4, Sohre 1. Free throws: 9-16. Total fouls: 29. Fouled out: Foster.
Mesabi: Glentrel Carter 5, Mark Campbell II 11, Kaeleb Roberts 15, Nataj Sanders 14, Ziaire Davis 19, Zion Sanford 2, Chris Rogers 10, Johnny Spencer 8, Anthony Rayson 3. 3-pointers: Campbell 1, Roberts 1, Davis 5, Spencer 2. Free throws: 22-42. Total fouls: 17. Fouled out: None.
Friday’s Region XIII Quarterfinal Contest
Mesabi Range 74,
COON RAPIDS—The Norsemen picked up their first playoff win since 2016-17 with a 74-52 victory Friday over Riverland in the first round of the Region XIII Tournament.
Mesabi Range advanced to play St. Cloud Tech last Saturday at 2 p.m. at Anoka-Ramsey Community College in Coon Rapids.
Mesabi Range 37 37—74
Riverland 24 28—52
MR: Kaeleb Roberts 4, Nataj Sanders 17, Ziaire Davis 3, Zion Sanford 9, Johnny Spencer 15, Vance Alexander 4, Anthony Rayson 10. 3-pointers: Davis 1, Spencer 2. Free throws: 19-28. Total fouls: 16. Fouled out: None.
R: Jamari Walker 10, Terry Moye 6, MJ Galimah 5, Zach Markland 1, Jayden Hill 3, Raheem Brizendine 6, Derrick Zeldenrust 4, Jourdan Weddle 17. 3-pointers: Walker 1, Moye 2, Weddle 2. Free throws: 15-20. Total fouls: 20. Fouled out: Markland, Hill.
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