HUTCHINSON, Kan.—Jordan Brangers scored a game-high 20 points and Shawntrez Davis finished with 18 points and seven boards as the South Plains College Texans dismantled the Northwest Florida State Raiders 103-75 on Saturday at the Hutchinson Sports Arena to take third place at the 2017 NJCAA Men's Basketball National Tournament.
"I'm a big presence inside if I really play my game, and my team just gave me the ball and told me to go to work," Davis said. "I felt like we needed a big presence down there because we haven't had one in a long time. I told myself to just score the ball every time I touched it."
South Plains(32-2) torched the Raiders with the rock shooting 50 percent from the floor and 38 percent from the 3-point line. The Texans won the battle on the glass outrebounding their counterpart 49-39 resulting in 50 points inside the paint. South Plains received 58 points off the bench and scored 16 points off Raider' turnovers.
"I thought we were a lot more relaxed and a little more aggressive offensively," South Plains head coach Steve Green said. "Defensively we were a lot quicker moving around and this guy (Davis) was a force inside and altered some shots, got a lot of rebounds and finished some baskets. I think we were a lot more relaxed tonight than maybe we've been in a couple weeks."
Grantham Gillard finished his final game for the Texans with 11 points on 4-of-9 shooting and knocked down a trio of 3s. Sophomore Raquan Mitchell finished with 10 points in his final game for South Plains while Justice Green and Roberto Gallinat each chipped in nine points.
Davis gave the Texans a 22-20 lead with 10:06 left in the first half on a tip-in at the rim. A 3-ball from Gillard with 8:29 left before the break extended the Texans' lead to 27-22. A layup from Gillard with 7:34 to play capped off a 7-0 Texans' run and extended the lead to 31-22. South Plains shot 48 percent from the floor before the break and took a 47-34 lead into the locker room at the midway point.
"We got off to a decent start and it got kind of infectious," Green said. "It kind of moved up and down and guys started cheering for each other. I think everyone left tonight with a good memorable play."
The Texans looked to gain confidence as the game progressed shooting 52 percent from the field and 55 percent from long distance in the final 20 minutes. South Plains looked to be just as impressive on the defensive end forcing the Raiders to shoot just 27 percent from 3 in the second half and 23 percent for the game.
Davis and Brangers combined for 24 points in the back half of the contest as the duo was 9-of-14 from the floor in the final minutes. Daryl Edwards led the Raiders(29-5) in scoring with 18 points while Jeromy Rodriguez had 17 and Andres Feliz pitched in with 14 points and five boards.
'We have a nine-hour ride home tomorrow, and it will probably be a little easier having won," Green said. "I think we wanted to get that nasty taste out of our mouth too. I don't think these guys think they really played really well up here, and kind of wanted the last round to be better."