LARGO, Md. – The Prince George's Community College men's basketball team begins its quest to win the National Junior College Athletic Conference (NJCAA) Division III District VII Tournament title and claim a spot in the NJCAA Division III Men's Basketball Championships starting on Friday against Southern Crescent Technical College at the Montgomery College Rockville Gymnasium. Tipoff is 5 p.m.
Tickets for the NJCAA Division III District VII Tournament are $5.
The Owls advanced to the NJCAA District VII Tournament after finishing as the runners-up to Montgomery College in the NJCAA Region XX Tournament. The NJCAA Division III District VII Tournament consists of Montgomery and Prince George's from NJCAA Division III Region XX, Southern Crescent Technical College, the winner of NJCAA Division III Region XVII, and Sandhills Community College, the winner of NJCAA Division III Region X.
Montgomery and Sandhills will play in the other semifinals in Rockville on Friday at 7 p.m. with the two semifinal winners playing for the NJCAA Division III District VII title on Saturday at 3 p.m. The winner of the NJCAA Division III District VII Championship moves onto the NJCAA Division III Men's Basketball Championship at Paul Gerry Fieldhouse on the campus of Sullivan County Community College in Loch Sheldrake, N.Y., on Mar. 15-19.
Prince George's will be participating in the district tournament for the fifth time in the last seven years and the first since the 2015-16 campaign. The Owls went to the district tournament as the NJCAA Division III Region XX champion in 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16 and lost in the semifinals. In 2011-12, the squad won the NJCAA Division III Region XX Tournament title before defeating West Georgia Technical College 83-81 in the NJCAA Division III District VII semifinals and then lost to Sandhills Community College in the championship game, 82-67. The last time Prince George's advanced to the NJCAA National Tournament was 2007-08 when the Owls were still a member of the NJCAA Division II.
Prince George's (16-13) is led by sophomore All-Maryland Junior Athletic Conference (MD JUCO) second-team performer Gus Stone (Baltimore, Md./North County) with 18.3 points per game. Sophomore Mykal Johnson (Seat Pleasant, Md./Charles H. Flowers), an All-MD JUCO first-team selection, is second on the team with 17.0 points per game. Johnson, who eclipsed the 1,000-point plateau in the Owls NJCAA Division III Region XX semifinal victory against Westmoreland County Community College, ranks second on the team with 6.2 rebounds per game. Sophomore Kennith Ford (Forestville, Md./National Collegiate) is third on the team with 14.6 points per game. Freshman Shiloh Beale (Waldorf, Md./St. Charles) ranks fourth on the team with 8.9 points per game but is averaging 16.5 points per game in his last eight tilts. Sophomore James Hagins (Roanoke, Va./William Fleming) is the team's leading rebounder with 8.4 boards per game.
The Owls head coach Brian Johnson is 36-22 in his two seasons and will be making his district tournament coaching debut.
Southern Crescent Technical defeated Oxford Emory 50-44 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Conference and West Georgia Technical 65-53 to earn the conference tournament title and the NJCAA Division III Region XVII crown. Stevantae Cromer leads the Tigers (14-11) with 9.6 points per game. Elijah Johnson is second on the team with 7.5 points per game and a team-best 8.7 rebounds per game.