March 5, 2010

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CU Draws College of the Ozarks in First Round

Cornerstone University will make its 9th NAIA National Tournament appearance and will face the host College of the Ozarks who will be making its 14th appearance. The Golden Eagles will play the Bobcats at 9 p.m. EST on Wednesday, March 10th.  Cornerstone has a 19-7 record at the tournament. Ozarks have a 22-12 overall record at the tournament.  The College of the Ozarks finished 3rd in the Midlands Collegiate Athletic Conference with a 9-3 record and lost in its conference Semi-Final 87-65 to eventual champion Oklahoma Wesleyan, but they get an automatic berth because they are the host. The Bobcats have upset both Indiana Tech and Siena Heights in opening games in previous years so it is expected to be a tough game for the Golden Eagles in a very exciting atmosphere. The Bobcats are led by Jared Howerton and Mike Wiebe who both average just more than 15 points per game. Click here to see the full bracket.
"I'm really excited about going back to the tournament after being out the last two years," states head coach Kim Elders, "playing the home team in the College of the Ozarks is a tough draw but we are excited to play them." 

Senior Matt Kingshott echoes those same sentiments.  "I'm excited to finish my career in Branson. It's a big challenge to face the home team but we have been the underdog a lot this year and we'll be the underdog again and I like that. We are ready for the challenge and excited to go."
If the Golden Eagles beat the Bobcats  they will take on the winner of No. 7 seed Dakota Wesleyan (27-5) and McPherson (20-8) on Friday at 8:30 p.m. EST. If you can't make the trip to Branson you can purchase a package to watch the action live on www.watchnaia.com.  The voice of Golden Eagle basketball, Andy Smith, will also be bringing the games to you live via audio webcast. To listen, visit:  http://www.cornerstone.edu/athletics/webcasts/
Cornerstone will depart from the Hansen Athletic Center at 9 p.m. Sunday, March 7.
Follow the Golden Eagles trip to Branson on CU's expanded basketball Web Site 
Cornerstone's  Web Site -
www.cornerstone.edu - is your place to follow every step of the Golden Eagles run to the NAIA national championship.   The basketball page, expanded for the NAIA tournament, will take you inside the team's trip to Branson.   Beginning Monday, March 8, features include:
  • Previews and reviews of every Cornerstone game;
  • Statistics
  • Photos and video from practices, games, meetings, events and travel;
  • A twice-daily blog from assistant coach Lance Roark.
  • Video interviews
  • Links to NAIA websites
  • Access to CU Twitter
Follow the Golden Eagles all week at www.cornerstone.edu/athletics/mens_basketball

Golden Eagles Cut Nets Down In Mol Arena

The Golden Eagles cut the nets down in Mol Arena for the first time after defeating Aquinas 62-50 to claim the 2010 WHAC Men's Basketball Tournament.  Cornerstone claimed the automatic berth to the NAIA National Tournament in Branson, MO.,  beginning March 10 with the win.
The last time Cornerstone won the championship on campus was in 1999 when they played in the old gym.  It marks the sixth time (1999, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2010) the Golden Eagles have won the WHAC tournament.
The Golden Eagles opened WHAC tournament  play with a 60-52 win against UM-Dearborn.  Cornerstone sputtered out of the gate but gradually cut into the Wolves lead and took their first lead with 3:38 to play.  The Golden Eagles went into the locker room up 32-27. They maintained their lead throughout the second half and pushed the lead to as much as 14 on a couple of occasions, but they had to withstand a late run by UM-Dearborn as they finished 60-52.  Ronald Bates led the Golden Eagles with 17 points in the victory.
Cornerstone defeated Siena Heights 100-77 to advance to the WHAC Championship.  The Golden Eagles started out much differently than they did against UM-Dearborn.  Cornerstone opened the game with a 12-1 run and only trailed 1-0 for the entire game.  Cornerstone and Siena Heights traded runs in the half but the Golden Eagles finished the half with a 9-1 run and a 51-31 halftime lead.  The Golden Eagles maintained at least a 19 point advantage through the second half as they cruised to the victory. Kelvin DeVries led the Golden Eagles with a career high 32 point on 11-17 shooting which included 8-12 from the 3-point line.
Cornerstone hosted a tough Aquinas team (a 55-53 upset winner over Davenport) in the WHAC Championship game. Neither team shot particularly well in game. Cornerstone made just 18 of 48 (37.5%) of their attempts and Aquinas hit 18 of 50 (36%) of their shots.  It was a defensive grind and Aquinas did a nice job of slowing down the game to keep the score low and close. Cornerstone's depth did wear them down as the second half wore down and the Golden Eagles prevailed 62-50. Caleb Simons led the Golden Eagle attack with 15 points and 6 rebounds.


Golden Eagles well represented on 2010 WHAC
 all-conference teams
The Golden Eagles were well represented on the All-WHAC teams. Coach Kim Elders was named WHAC Coach of the Year for leading the Golden Eagles to its 5th WHAC Regular Season title. Kelvin DeVries and  Caleb Simons were both named First Team All-Conference. Ronald Bates was named to the Second Team and Matt Kingshott was named to the Third Team. Bryan Pasciak was named to both the All-Newcomer Team and the All-Defensive Team. Corbin Donaldson was also named to the All-Defensive Team.  Donaldson was also named to the Champions of Character Team. DeVries, Donaldson, Pasciak, Kingshott, Ryan Zwier and Dominic Allen were all named to the All-Academic Team.

Four Golden Eagles were honored by the WHAC. Junior Brooke Carter was named to the All-Conference First Team.  Carter recorded 17 double doubles this season and averaged a double double  scoring 14.3 ppg and 10.1 rpg.  Robyn Veltkamp was named to the Second Team. Veltkamp was the third leading scorer on the team averaging 13.2 ppg and she led the team in assists dishing out 5.7 apg for the season.  Melissa Veltkamp was named to the Third Team. She led the team in scoring averaging 14.4 ppg. Alicia TerHaar was named to the Champions of Character Team and was also Academic All-Conference.