Columbia Remains Unbeaten, Knocks Off Oklahoma City, 68-37
Kansas City, Mo. - Top-seeded Columbia (Mo.) posted the largest margin of victory so far at the 2013 Buffalo Funds-NAIA Division I Men's Basketball National Championship, a 68-37 win over Oklahoma City. The Cougars will advance to the second round and play Hope International (Calif.) on Friday, March 15 at 6:15 p.m. CDT. The event is held at Municipal Auditorium.
Jordan Dressler recorded 21 points and 13 rebounds for Columbia, converting 9-of-13 field goal attempts that included both of his three-point attempts. Derrick Dilworth chipped in with 11 points while Marquette Murrell finished with eight points and nine rebounds.
"The guys just really had a bounce in their step today," said Columbia head coach Bob Burchard. They were focused and determined to come out strong. We knew where to be and how to defend that explosive offense. We just moved the ball well and didn't allow their pressure to get to us on the offensive end which obviously helped as well."
The Cougars (34-0) dominated on both ends of the floor in the first half, holding the Stars to 5-of-30 (.167) shooting and allowing just 12 points. Columbia used a 23-4 run over 10:10 after Troynell Adams scored the first points of the game for Oklahoma City to claim a 25-6 lead.
Dressler nearly had a double-double by halftime, tallying 12 points and nine rebounds in the opening stanza and scoring 10 of the first 14 points of the game for his team.
"Obviously we didn't play well and we didn't shoot the ball well at all and they did," said Oklahoma City head coach Dionne Phelps. (Columbia) did a great job. I see why they are one of the top teams in the country. When you don't make shots, it makes the game really difficult."
Columbia committed just nine turnovers in the game and the 17 combined by the two teams was the lowest thus far in the championship. The Stars recorded eight blocked shots, led by Kaleb Smith with five.
Terrence Walker was the only Oklahoma City player in double figures, tallying 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting. Terry Johnson added seven points while Smith and Charlton Jones each grabbed six rebounds for the Stars. Oklahoma City ends its season at 17-11.
Columbia - The Cougars are making their 17th appearance at the Division I Men's Basketball National Championships and improved to 8-16 all-time ... Columbia avenged a 91-64 loss to Oklahoma City in the 2006 tournament ... The Cougars are the fourth-straight top seed to win an opening round game and are trying to become the third undefeated national champion in tournament history ... Columbia matched its season-low of 38 points allowed, matching the total allowed in wins over Central Christian (Kan.) and Hannibal-LaGrange (Mo.).
Oklahoma City - The Stars are making their 20th national tournament appearance and are now 47-14 all-time ... Oklahoma City is the leader among this year's 32-team field with six national championships, the last coming in 2008 ... The 12-point first half was the lowest output of the season for the Stars.