Ambassadors reach conference championship, earn awards

Feb. 24—It's been a rewarding weekend so far for the Ozark Christian College basketball teams in Ankeny, Iowa, at Faith Baptist Bible College for the Midwest Christian College Conference tournament.

Both the men's and women's teams have advanced to the conference championship on Saturday evening and both received multiple awards on Friday after their semifinal victories.

The men tip off at 5:45 p.m. for the championship game against Manhattan Christian College. The Ambassadors topped Emmaus Bible College and Central Christian College of the Bible to get to this spot as the second seed in the bracket.

The Thunder (16-11) beat OCC (17-10) 80-75 last Saturday in a regular season contest and 67-61 back in Jan. The Ambassadors seek revenge in the postseason.

No. 1 seed MCC defeated no. 5 seed Faith Baptist Bible College in the semifinal round after receiving a bye in the first round.

The women tip off at 3:30 p.m. against second-seeded Calvary University in pursuit of their fourth straight MCCC conference championship. The Ambassadors earned the first seed and a bye in the quarterfinals. A win over Central Christian College of the Bible in the semis got them to the title match.

OCC (17-3) beat Calvary (11-10) 82-48 on Jan. 30 and 66-39 on Jan. 12 in the regular season. It will look to complete a sweep of the Warriors with a postseason victory.


Ozark took both regular season MVP awards as Andre Johnson took the honor in the men's league and Emmy Colin for the women's.

The women were regular season champs with a perfect 10-0 record while the men got runner-up with a 10-3 record.

Other players that received recognition for their regular season performances were Reagan Etzel and Brooke Nice with first-team honors. Then Kyndall Scott and Danny Foster were second-team selections. Clarissa Rice and Micah Colburn received honorable mention.


The men topped CCCB 94-76 and used a 52-point second half to pull away. The Ambassadors led by just 3 points at halftime.

Conference MVP Johnson led the way with 31 points and shot 12 of 14 overall. Foster chipped in 20 points and 11 rebounds for a double-double. Colburn and Aason Cross added 12 and 11 points, respectively.

Trey Palmer led CCCB with 25 points. Edris Hamilton (12), Nolan Mathes (11) and Quincy James Jr. (10) all provided double-digit scoring as well.

OCC was a productive 53.5% from the field and 36% from beyond the arc. It made 9 of 25 3-pointers. It did struggle at the free throw line only making 9 of 17 attempts.

CCCB shot just 41% overall but made good on its triples going 11 for 30 for 36.7%.

The women's team had a similar performance as its halftime lead was just 30-24. But the Ambassadors won both of the first two quarters and built some momentum to stretch that lead into a 66-49 victory.

Ozark was able to tally 22 points in the final frame and seal the semifinal win over CCCB.

Conference MVP Colin led the way with 17 points and 10 of them came on a perfect 10-for-10 shooting at the free throw line. Colin also grabbed 16 rebounds for a double-double. Scott tallied 12 points and 10 rebounds for a double-double of her own. Nice and Etzel scored 12 and 10 points, respectively.

Harmoni Tart and Claire Van Thomme tallied 14 points apiece to lead CCCB in scoring.

Both teams benefitted from trips to the free throw line as OCC (18 of 23) shot 78.3% and CCCB (13 of 21) shot 61.9% there.

Neither team shot well from the field with both finishing around 30% but the Ambassadors were able to make 8 of 23 3-pointers for 34.8%.