OCC men claim ACCA championship

Mar. 17—Ozark Christian College took a trip to Plymouth, Minnesota, this week for the Association of Christian College Athletics national tournament of men's basketball.

The third-seeded Ambassadors made sure it was a business trip as they will return home with a championship trophy after defeating fourth-seeded Union College (Nebraska) 89-84 in overtime of the championship game on Friday afternoon.

OCC's Andre Johnson claimed tournament MVP honors and Micah Colburn was named to the all-tournament team. Johnson registered a double-double with 24 points and 11 rebounds in the title game and Colburn had a double-double of his own with 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Ozark trailed by 6 points at halftime and as many as 12 during the first half. The score was 34-28 in favor of Union after the first 20 minutes of action.

The Ambassadors battled back and fought to a draw at the end of regulation with the scoreboard showing a 76-76 deadlock.

Ozark grabbed its largest lead of the game during overtime by 7 points with 2:25 left in the bonus period and held on for the 5-point win.

Joining Johnson and Colburn in double figures were Aason Cross with 22 and Danny Foster with 15. Cross was 5 for 9 from beyond the arc coming off the bench in the contest.

Union was led by Blake Essex's 23 points and 11 rebounds and Braden Essex chipped in another double-double with 19 and 10 off the bench. Danset Okemwa added 12 points off four 3-pointers.

OCC was just 38% on field goals in the game but was an efficient 37% (10 for 27) on treys. It added 19 points on 19-of-26 shooting at the free throw line.

Union College was a bit more efficient overall on field goals, finishing at 46%, but was just 31.3% on 3-pointers. Union was 8 of 10 on free throws.

Ozark won its first two games of the tournament by scores of 111-40 in the first round and 103-74 in the second round.

The Ozark Christian women took third place in the ACCA tournament.