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Committed Mustang

MACU's Alex Stanley nears end of college basketball career

Clinton 81 Mid-Atlantic Christian 57

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Mid-Atlantic Christian's Alex Stanley (center) has been a member of the MACU men's basketball program for four seasons.

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By David Gough
Sports Writer

Friday, February 15, 2019

Wednesday night was senior night for the Mid-Atlantic Christian men’s basketball team as it hosted Clinton College in Chesson Gym.

There was only one senior to be recognized during the Mustangs’ 81-57 loss. Alex Stanley, a former Pasquotank player, was honored at halftime.

The rest of his teammates stayed on the bench during the first few minutes of the break as he stood at center court with his parents and brother. Coach Allan Harris gave him a hug as he handed Stanley a basketball full of his teammates’ signatures.

“It means a lot,” Stanley said. “Just to know that you’re supported not only in the school, but in the community. It means a lot.”

Stanley was also substituted out of the game with 2:18 left to an ovation from those in attendance.

He was Harris’ first recruit when the coach took over the men’s basketball team four seasons ago.

“He contributed a lot and we accomplished a lot with him being here,” Harris said. “He’s probably one of the most decorative players to come out of (MACU). Academic All-American and a lot of things he’s accomplished here.”

Among the things Stanley has accomplished as a four-year Mustang is starting in 53 of 101 total games played. He’s also scored more than 500 points and grabbed nearly 400 rebounds with a couple games still to play.

Stanley was also a member of last season’s Bible College NIT champion last March when the Mustangs defeated Trinity Baptist in Jacksonville, Fla. for the first time in MACU history.

Stanley noted that sinking game-winning free throws against Apprentice School last Thursday was a “high point” of his career.

As the only senior on the team this season, he’s averaged a career-best 7.5 points per game and has averaged 11 points per game in the last 11 games he has played in.

Harris appreciated what Stanley brought to the team as the only senior this season.

“He’s been a really good contribution to the Mustang family,” Harris said. “He’s a good leader and a captain. Soft spoken, but he’s not afraid to let everyone know what we have to do to be successful.”

Stanley acknowledged how much he appreciated being able to be part of a small school that felt like a family and how much he appreciated being able to play basketball just down the road from where he graduated high school.

“My parents were like MACU’s No. 1 fans. They travelled to every single game,” Stanley said. “My dream when I was younger was to play college basketball and I got to fulfill my dream.”

Stanley scored eight points in the Mustangs’ loss to Clinton.

While MACU (3-20, 2-9 Eastern Metro Athletic Conference) quickly started strong on Wednesday night against a conference opponent, it crumbled even faster.

Five points from Khalil Bolden and a 3-pointer from Colin Cunningham gave the Mustangs an 8-0 lead not even two minutes into the game, but the Bears (14-11, 5-5 EMAC) caught fire and scored the next 18 points.

By halftime, Clinton led 51-27 with a ton of success from the 3-point line. The Bears hit nine of 17 attempts (52.9 percent) from beyond the arc, including seven of their first 10 to open up a big lead.

Marquise Caldwell led Clinton with 18 points in the game as Micah Smith added 15.

The Mustangs, led by Bolden’s 20 points, were outrebounded 50-34 and turned the ball over 17 times. They shot just 23-of-67 (34.3 percent) from the field for the game.

“Whatever the game plan is, you have to execute and you have to play hard,” Harris said. “We didn’t play well defensively when it counted. In spurts, we did some things, but we have to execute and play defense. We have to box out and rebound.”

MACU lost to the Bears by six earlier this season and will have a third shot at them in a regular-season finale in South Carolina on Tuesday.

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