Langston men’s basketball advances to NAIA national championship game

Photo courtesy of Langston University.

The Langston University Lions held off the defending national champions, the College of Idaho Yotes, 58-52 to advance to the NAIA Men’s Basketball National Championship Final on Monday.

Tied at 52-52 with 44 seconds left, Anthony Roy hit Jay Allen-Tovar for layup inside to put Langston in front 54-52 with 29 seconds left.

Langston broke the game open on the ensuing offensive possession when Roy batted away a loose ball towards G’Quavious Lennox, who in turn lobbed it to Cortez Mosley for a breakaway slam dunk to put the Lions ahead for good.

Mosley led Langston in scoring with 14 points on six-of-14 shooting and Brown chipped in 12 on five-of-seven shooting. Collectively, Langston hit 38 percent (23-of-60) from the field and outscored College of Idaho 16-11 in bench points, 32-26 in points in the paint and 11-9 in points off turnovers.

While Langston University will be making its first appearance in the NAIA National Championship game, it will be the second title game appearance for head coach Chris Wright. Wright led Talladega (Ala.) to the 2022 title game where they fell 71-56 to Loyola (La.). The second-year head coach noted what he’s learned as a coach and leader since then.

“Since getting to Kansas City, I’ve enjoyed this experience so much more than I did the first time with Talladega,” Wright said. “I was miserable to be honest, I was happy to win but I didn’t enjoy it, I survived it. When I was hired here, (former Langston University president) Dr. (Kent J.) Smith made me promise that if we ever went on a run like that at Langston that I would enjoy it. When we won the second-round game at our place I said I’m going to enjoy whatever happens the rest of the way.”

The Lions will play Freed-Hardeman University today, March 26, 2024, in the Kansas City Municipal Auditorium at 7:00 p.m. CT. This marks the first time the Lions have advanced to an NAIA National Championship game in university history. 

This game is available to watch on ESPN3.  


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