DENVER (CBS4) – Metro State University was just one win away from the NCAA Division II championship game last Thursday when they fell short to Central Missouri 71-69 after mounting a great comeback.
Metro State’s Mitch McCarron narrowly missed a three-point shot as time expired for the win. Metro State head coach Derrick Clark still is feeling the sting of the loss after the Roadrunners’ amazing 31-1 season leading into the Final Four game.
“It is hard because … to me, it is still fresh. What you do as a coach is you rewind things and figure out what you could have done better,” Clark said on Xfinity Monday Live! “It is more looking at me right now. Immediately when that game was over, I talked to the guys and their appreciation down the road for what they did this year.”
Despite Clark’s comment, the fact is the Roadrunners won over 30 games — 29 in a row – and that’s getting it done.
A year ago Metro State reached the national championship game against Drury, but the Roadrunners would have to settle for runners up.
“I still think about it to this day. During the NCAA Showcase when they announced all the teams that made it, they kind of replayed some of the highlights from the game and it just hit me hard,” guard Brandon Jefferson said.
This season Metro State was on a mission, and for most of the year, no team was close. Heading into the Elite 8, Metro State reeled up 28 straight wins. Three more would make them national champions for the third time in school history.
“That’s the goal. That’s the ultimate dream – to win a national championship,” McCarron said.
The Roadrunners opened the Elite 8 by thumping Tuskegee. It was one down and two to go — but Metro’s mission would not make it back to the title game.
“I think we just need to learn from this and hopefully next season we can learn from it, be back here and try again,” center Nicholas Kay said.
Watch more of the video with Derrick Clark in the Xfinity Monday Live! section.