On Thursday evening, the Bobcats, seeded No. 8 in the Duer Bracket of the NAIA DII Men’s Basketball National Championship, faced No. 1 seed West Virginia University Institute of Technology in Sioux Falls, S.D. and fell 90-79 to the Golden Bears.
It was a toughly fought match, particularly in the first half, as the Bobcats tied the game at 41 with 3:18 remaining. The Golden Bears, however, put up a 10-2 run in the last three minutes to lead the Bobcats 51-43 at the half. CofO posted a 50% field goal shooting percentage, and WVU Tech boasted 55.6%. The Bobcats hit 6-17 from three (35.3%); WVU Tech was 10-20 (50%).
Both teams returned in the second half with less accuracy, as WVU shot 32.5% and the Bobcats shot 36%. The Wildcats extended their lead to as many as 16 points with 9:53 remaining, but the Cats chipped away to close the gap to seven points (86-79) with 51 seconds remaining in the game. WVU’s Tommy Collins had not intention of giving up. He helped WVU put the game away, as he hit a couple of free throws, made two baskets, and nabbed a steal in the closing seconds to give the Wildcats an 11-point victory.
The Bobcats were led by Ethan Davidson, who poured in a game-high 31 points on 13-20 field goals. He was joined in double figures by Heath Carmichael, who tallied 17 points, and Storm Price with a double-double of 14 points and a game-leading 10 rebounds.
Carmichael hit five three-pointers in the game to set the new Bobcat record for Three-Point Shots Made in a Season at 132. The previous record was set by Chris Larsen in 1990-91 with 127.
While the Bobcats close out their 2018-2019 season with a record of 22-11, Bobcat season highlights leading up to the tournament are worth remembering:
- Bobcats open the 2018-19 season with a 94-80 win over Tabor College.
- Senior forward Ethan Davidson is presented with a plaque commemorating his 1,000th career point, scored late last season.
- Bobcats upset #2 Indiana University East, 96-83. Ethan Davidson led the way with 39 points and 13 rebounds. Bobcats shot 65% from the field and were 22-22 at the free-throw line.
- Ethan Davidson receives A.I.I. Player of the Week honors.
- Bobcats defeat NAIA DI Mid-America Christian University, 104-94. Brandt Cochran scores 40 points.
- Junior guard Brandt Cochran receives A.I.I. and NCCAA Player of the Week honors.
- Bobcats defeat rival Evangel University 108-60. Their 64-point second half tied the season-high point total for a half.
- Bobcats pick up a 106-100 conference win over Northern New Mexico College. Junior Storm Price scores a career-high 14 points.
- Brandt Cochran is once again named A.I.I. and NCCAA Player of the Week.
- In the Bobcats’ 114-95 win over Central Christian College of the Bible, Brandt Cochran nets a career-high 42 points in just over 29 minutes of play.
- Two Bobcats score career highs, as the Bobcats defeat Crowley’s Ridge, 100-63. Senior Heath Carmichael drops 25 points, and freshman Klay Barton nets a career-high 18.
- Bobcats defeat Ecclesia College, 98-84. Heath Carmichael scores his 1,000th career point, and Ethan Davidson scores a career-high 40 points.
- Ethan Davidson is named A.I.I. Player of the Week two weeks running.
- In an 87-60 win over Haskell, Brandt Cochran scores his 1,000th point.
- Bobcats defeat conference opponent Crowley’s Ridge College, 85-74. Sophomore Treydon Rackley scores a career-high 22 points.
- Heath Carmichael is named A.I.I. Player of the Week after draining 13-of-20 treys in a two-game stretch.
- Cochran is named A.I.I. Player of the Week for the third time in 2018-19.
- Bobcats defeat #21 Indiana University Northwest, 105-90, to advance to the A.I.I. Conference Tournament Championship game, earning them an automatic bid in the 2018-19 NAIA DII Men’s Basketball National Championship tournament.
Note: the rankings of teams noted above relate to the opponent’s ranking at the time they played College of the Ozarks
BOBCATS’ TEAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
- Posted a 22-10 record to date
- Received the Association of Independent Institutions Conference Championship Runner-Up by:
- defeating Haskell Indian Nations University, 71-68. Heath Carmichael led the Bobcats to a first-round victory, netting 18 points, including a game winning three with 2.9 seconds remaining in regulation.
- defeating #21 Indiana University Northwest, 105-90. Ethan Davidson was just shy of a double-double with 33 points and 9 boards in the Bobcats’ upset victory over the tournament’s number one seed IU Northwest.
- falling in a heartbreaker to Voorhees College, 89-91, in double overtime. Davidson also led the Bobcats with 31 points.
- Ranked in Top 10 of NAIA DII in:
- No. 1: 3-pt FG Pct. (43.8%)
- No. 3: Total Assists (592), Assists Per Game (18.5), and Total 3-pt FG Made (384)
- No. 4: 3-pt FG Made Per Game (12), Field Goal Pct. (51.4%)
- No. 5: Assist/Turnover Ratio (1.518)
- No. 7: Free Throw Pct. (78.5%), Total Scoring Offense (2,886)
- No. 8: Scoring Offense Per Game (90.188)
BOBCATS’ TEAM MEMBER ACCOMPLISHMENTS
- Ethan Davidson has gathered 12 double-doubles to date in 32 games played. He leads his team in scoring with 784 points (25.29 ppg). His impressive scoring this season brings his career total to 1,818.
- Heath Carmichael, in his most recent game, tied the Bobcats’ All-Time Record for Three-Point Shots Made in a Season, which has been in place since 1990-91. He currently stands at 127 on the season.
- A.I.I. Awards
- Ethan Davidson – A.I.I. Co-Player of the Year, First Team All-Conference, and A.I.I. All-Tournament Team
- Brandt Cochran – First Team All-Conference, A.I.I. All-Tournament Team
- Heath Carmichael – Honorable Mention All-Conference, A.I.I. All-Tournament Team, Champion of Character
- Ranked in Top 10 of NAIA DII:
- Heath Carmichael – No. 2: Total 3-pt FG Made (127); No. 3: 3-pt FG Pct. (50.6%); No. 4: 3-pt FG Made Per Game (3.969)
- Brandt Cochran – No. 3: Total 3-pt FG Made (125); No. 5: 3-pt FG Pct. (48.3%); No. 6: 3-pt FG Made per Game (3.906)
- Ethan Davidson – No. 5: Total Scoring (784); No. 6: Points Per Game (25.290); No. 8: 3-pt FG Pct. (47.5%); No. 10: Defensive Rebounds Per Game (7.129)
Congratulations to the Bobcats on a great season, and a special thank you to our seniors for your many contributions to the Bobcat basketball program!