The Division-I, Region-I Tournament semi-finals for the Arizona Community College Athletic Conference (ACCAC) took place on Saturday evening, as #1 seed Cochise hosted #4 seed Eastern Arizona Junior College, and #2 seed Arizona Western JC hosted #3 seed Mesa Junior College.
Cochise Junior College (26-5) has led the ACCAC standings for much of the junior college season, and held at 5-game lead at the end of the junior college season. Cochise went into Saturday's playoff match-up ranking among the nation's Top 20 junior college programs in the NJCAA, and was one of the hottest juco programs in America - winning their last (15) games on the junior college season.
On Saturday evening, Cochise was stunned at home in the playoffs - falling to a very talented and gifted Eastern Arizona JC team that had struggled this junior college season to gain any true consistency. Eastern Arizona (19-11), amidst a tremendous home-court advantage by Cochise, as a result of their tremendous fan support, would stun Cochise in double-overtime, 102-94. As a result, Eastern Arizona will now advance to the ACCAC Region-I, Division-I Final game, where they will face Arizona Western JC, again on the road.
#2 seed Arizona Western (23-8) knocked off a tough Mesa JC team in a narrow fashion, 80-77. Arizona Western led at the half 51-36, after pouring in (12) three-pointers in the game's first half. A last-second shot would fail to convert for Mesa, as Arizona Western would hold off Mesa in the second half. Mesa (15-15) outscored AWC 41-29 in the game's second half, after getting down early.
Talented and very underrated 6-foot-4 freshman guard Kyle Fischer finished with a game-high 18 points in the loss for Mesa JC.
Arizona Western and Eastern Arizona will now face off for the right to win the division championship, and advance to the Region-I Final on Monday (3/4) @ Arizona Western @ 7:30PM.