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Rowan Clinched NJAC Mens Basketball Title

MONTCLAIR, NJ (Feb. 14, 2024)(CNBNews)--– Rowan clinched its second straight NJAC men’s basketball regular-season title despite falling to Montclair State, 113-110, in double overtime in the final game of the regular season. The #21 Profs (19-6) have earned the top seed and a bye in the 2024 NJAC Championship and will host a semifinal game on Wednesday, February 21st at 7 p.m. in Esby Gym.


Rowan finished the regular season with a 13-5 mark in the conference and despite the loss, was helped by second-place Stockton falling to Kean, 72-56, this evening.


Marcellus Ross scored a team-high 31 points, hitting five three-pointers as he posted his third 30-plus point game of the year. Ja’Zere Noel scored 27 points and Khalif Meares netted 19 for the Profs.


With Montclair State (17-8; 12-6) leading, 92-86, with 58 seconds remaining in regulation, Ross connected on back-to-back three-pointers, with his second tying the game at 92-92 and sending it into the first extra period.


In the first overtime, Montclair State led 103-101 at :15 but Meares connected on a driving layup with :07 to tie the game again and force the second overtime.


The Red Hawks struck first in the second overtime as Mike Jackson hit a three-pointer. Rowan took a 108-106 lead on five straight points by Ross, before Jackson forced a tie, 108-108, with a layup as he finished with 33 points, after going scoreless in the first half. Rowan regained the lead, 110-109, but the Red Hawks scored the final four of the game to earn the win. The Profs had one last chance, but Meares’ three-point attempt was off the mark.


Trailing 50-37 at halftime, Montclair State started inching back in the second half, outscoring the Profs, 14-7, in the first four minutes to pull within, 59-53. The Red Hawks put together a 15-4 run to take a 68-65 lead with 11:13 remaining and would lead for the remainder of the half until Ross hit the game-tying three-pointers.


In the first half, Rowan used a 12-2 run to break a 20-20 tie and go up by 32-22 at the midway point. The Profs built upon that lead with six straight to lead 41-29 with 5:15 left and then gained their biggest lead of the half, 48-33, after a three from Mikey Robinson, Jr., and basket by Meares in the final two minutes.-


NJAC CHAMPIONSHIP TICKET POLICY – Prices are $10 for adults; $5 for seniors, visiting students and children. The first 100 Rowan students will be admitted free with ID. Season passes will not be accepted for the NJAC Championship. Tickets will be on sale at the door- cash only.