White makes history in Nighthawk Win

HOT SPRINGS — The National Park College (NPC) Nighthawk men’s basketball team (18-0) celebrated its third consecutive week ranked No. 1 in National Junior College Athletics Association (NJCAA) Division 2 with a 99-85 victory over North Arkansas College Monday.

Patrick Punch
Nakavieon White

Following a 7-0 run to start the game, NPC set the tone early with aggressive three-point scoring from sophomore guard Patrick Punch (Houston, Texas) and dominant put-backs down low from sophomore center Taylor Harrell (Houston, Texas). The Pioneers would not go away quietly, however, catching fire from beyond the arc to take a 21-19 lead with 11:27 to play in the first half. Sophomore forward Nakavieon White (Odessa, Texas) heated up down the stretch, knocking down 12 first-half points as NPC outlasted the Pioneers, 45-42, at the break. 

After North Arkansas College regained the lead briefly, 50-49, with 17:55 to go, Punch answered with a deep three-pointer to give the Nighthawks the lead for good. Sophomore guard Ja’Bryant Hill (Dallas, Texas) erupted for 11 points late as National Park College crossed the finish line with its 18th win of the season. With seven assists in the second half, White passed former Nighthawk Kam Vick to become NPC’s all-time leader in assists.

Punch led the Nighthawks in scoring with 23 points. White recorded his second triple double in a week, adding 21 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists. Harrell finished with 17 points and 11 rebounds, while Hill and sophomore forward Anthony Swift (Las Vegas, Nevada) contributed 11 points apiece in the win.

The Nighthawks travel to South Arkansas College in El Dorado Thursday, February 1 at 6:30 p.m.

For more information on schedules, rosters and more, visit Nighthawk Athletics online. Fans can also follow the Nighthawks all season on social media.