Opponents are learning not to underestimate the Central men’s basketball team under coach Craig Douma.
Last year’s club was picked for last in the Iowa Conference. Instead, the Dutch roared to the league championship and reached the second round of the NCAA Division III tournament. As Douma entered his third season facing heavy graduation losses, little was expected once again. But Central scrapped its way to fourth place in the league standings and was 15-10 overall. The Dutch pulled another stunner when they knocked off No. 1-ranked Augustana (Ill.) 89-78 at home Dec. 3.
Sophomore forward Colby Taylor was a third-team all-West Region pick by D3hoops.com after averaging 16.4 points and 9.6 rebounds, notching nine double-doubles.
Senior guard Nile Eckermann was a first-team all-league honoree after averaging 15.3 points with a school-record 74 3-pointers. He was the league’s athlete of the week after pouring in 35 points at Loras Jan. 17. Taylor was a second-team selection.