State Colleges

Gorillas barrel into MIAA men’s semis; Lincoln wins, too, joining Northwest, Washburn

Pitt State senior guard Grant Lozoya
Pitt State senior guard Grant Lozoya Pitt State/via @Twitter (file photo)

The field for Saturday’s MIAA men’s basketball tournament semifinals features some familiarity and some surprise.

The intrigue was added Friday when sixth-seeded Pitt State knocked off No. 3 seed Missouri Southern 89-80 at KC’s Municipal Auditorium.

In the other Saturday men’s semifinal, it’ll be a familiar face — unbeaten, top-ranked and top-seeded Northwest Missouri State — against fifth-seeded Lincoln, a 74-69 winner Friday over No. 4 seed Fort Hays State.

Senior guard Grant Lozoya led Pitt State (17-12) with 23 points, followed by Donovan Franklin with 22, A.J. Walker with 21 and Demetrius Levarity with 12. The Gorillas were down 20-18 at the 7:14 mark but then took off, building their advantage to as many as 15 points.

Forward Cam Martin led Missouri Southern (23-7) with 25 points and 11 rebounds. Three other Lions reached double-digit scoring — Kinzer Lambert 17 (with 15 rebounds), Enis Memic 11 and Parker Jennings 10.

In the other semifinal, Grant Olsson paced Lincoln (18-11) with 23 points, followed by Jonell Burton with 22 and nine rebounds and Ni’Sean Rigmaiden with 12 points and 11 assists. Aaron Nicholson had 18 points for Fort Hays State (18-11).

Women’s quarterfinals

Washburn 61, Emporia State 53: Turning what had been a one-point game at intermission, the fourth-seeded Ichabods pulled away from the fifth-seeded Hornets in the final quarter. They’ll play top seed Fort Hays State Saturday at 6 p.m.

Lindenwood 54, Pitt State 50: Sixth-seeded Pitt State made a late charge down the stretch, but No. 3 seed Lindenwood eventually held on for the win in Friday’s nightcap. Kallie Bildner scored a game-high 19 points for Lindenwood, which will face second-seeded Central Missouri on Saturday at 8:15 p.m.

Both the men’s and women’s finals are Sunday.

Semifinal pairings

Men: No. 1 Northwest Missouri vs. No. 5 Lincoln, noon; No. 2 Washburn vs. No. 6 Pitt State, 2:15 p.m.

Women: No. 1 Fort Hays State vs. No. 4 Washburn, 6 p.m.; No. 2 Central Missouri vs No. 3 Lindenwood, 8:15 p.m.

Championship games

Men’s final: 1 p.m.

Women’s final: 3:15 p.m.

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