The Ranger College men's basketball team found themselves on the outside looking in on Friday following a stunning 85-75 loss to South Plains in the semifinals of the Region V Basketball Championships.
The loss left fourth-ranked Ranger hoping to land one of eight at-large berths to the upcoming national tournament, which begins on March 25 in Hutchinson, Kansas. The tournament officials will announce the at-large selections on Monday.
The loss to South Plains dropped Ranger College to 28-3.
The Rangers, who won the Northern Texas Junior College Athletic Conference by a three-game margin, got off to a quick start against South Plains. Ranger picked up several key shots from Brayan Au in the initial 20 minutes and rolled to a 38-33 lead at the half.
South Plains, which entered the tournament ranked No. 9 in the NJCAA rankings, hit stride in the second half. The Texans posted a 52-37 run in the second half. The Texans led by as many as 15 points in the contest before RC rallied in the closing minutes.
The NJCAA Division I Men's and Women's Basketball Selection Show will be streamed live via multiple platforms on Monday, March 11. The women's show will air at 10 a.m. while the men's show will air at 11:30 a.m. This year's selection shows will be available free of charge on NJCAA TV, Facebook Live, and Twitter.
The live show, hosted by Robert Williamson of JockJive Sports, will feature bracket reveals, on-air analysis, highlights, exclusive interviews, and in-depth information about each tournament. Both tournaments feature 24 teams - 16 automatic district qualifiers and eight additional at-large selections which will be announced during the selection show.