Men’s basketball season ends after team makes playoffs

By Wade Foley
Staff Writer

Coach Matt Moore (center) reaffirms zone defense to Jordan Heatherly (left), Scott Hilbert (right) and Brady Swanson (background) before the playoff game against Geneva (Pa.) on Feb. 23. Photo by Zach Snider

After defeating Malone during senior night on Feb. 19, the men’s basketball team tied for fifth place in the American Mideast Conference but lost the tiebreaker to make the AMC playoffs.

This resulted in the Cougars heading to the National Christian College Athletic Association tournament.

The Cougars faced Geneva (Pa.) College on Feb. 23 for their first tournament game. They fell to Geneva 98-89, forcing an early exit from the tournament and ending their season. The Cougars completed the season with a 16-15 record and 9-9 in the AMC.

The Cougars were proud to build on their first season with coach Matt Moore.

They improved on their record from last season and hope to continue to get better, with 10 players returning for next season.

The Cougars are also transitioning to the Mid-Central College Conference next season and are welcoming that challenge.

In his second season as head coach of the Cougars, Moore is proud to have talented players and is looking forward to continuing to improve.

“Our three seniors finished the race strong and I was proud of their effort down the stretch,” Moore said. “We are anxious for next season due to the drastic improvements we made in just one year, especially offensively.”

One of the main improvements the Cougars made was their play at home. They posted an 11-3 home record this season and were a tough team to play against at home.

“I felt our team made great strides in being a difficult team to play,” said Moore. “In our first two seasons with this group we have the most wins (29) under a new head coach than any other men’s team in school history.”

Senior Brandon Short has worked hard over the past four years to become an effective leader and good teammate.

“Coach would always tell us ‘work at the work,’” Short said. “Basically, he meant when we go in to practice, work hard at becoming better and work on going hard to better ourselves.”

“Although we did not accomplish everything we wanted to in terms of post season, we competed hard and had some great wins along the way,” senior Brady Swanson added.

“It was a great experience for me, and I will remember the time spent with my teammates both on and off the court.”
Moore is excited about continuing to build on this season and to bring in more talent each year.

“We will miss this group because of the groundwork they have laid,” Moore said, “but we are anxious for the opportunities ahead.”