Men's basketball: RCTC ends regular season with loss to Central Lakes
BRAINERD — Rochester Community and Technical College got off to a fast start but then fizzled in a 69-54 loss to Central Lakes Community College Saturday in a men's basketball game.
Central Lakes secured the MCAC South Division title and denied Rochester a share of the division. Rochester finished the regular season with 19-7 overall record, and in a three-way tie for second in the South Division at 8-4.
"It's disappointing, obviously, because this was for the conference title," said RCTC coach Brian LaPlante. "Central Lakes is an excellent club; they played very well defensively."
Rochester zipped to a 15-7 lead in the first half, but that lead dissolved amid a bunch of turnovers. Central Lakes outscored RCTC 28-5 in the last 10 minutes of the first half.
"Turnovers really led to our demise, letting them go on a big run," LaPlante said.
Torren Dowdy scored 16 points for Rochester and was the only Yellowjackets player to score in double figures. Vince Cary had a team-high eight rebounds.
LaPlante called Rochester's 31-percent shooting "abysmal", including 2-of-17 from three-point range. Central Lakes also had a 38-32 rebounding edge.
Central Lakes shot 42 percent from the field.
Rochester, the two-time defending state champion, will play in the MCAC State Tournament Friday through Sunday at Anoka Ramsey. The tournament will be seeded on Sunday.