After blowing a double digit third quarter lead, the Mustangs responded by scoring eight unanswered points early in the fourth quarter to regain control.
McIntosh threatened late, but Kennesaw Mountain made just enough free throws to preserve the victory. The Mustangs will play Kell for the championship tonight.
In the first half, Kennesaw Mountain used six 3-pointers to help build a six-point lead at the break. The lead extended to 13 midway through the third frame.
Then McIntosh began hitting their stride from beyond the arc late in the third quarter and generated a 15-2 run to end the third quarter. The Chiefs scored on six of their last seven possessions to end the third with a 51-all tie.
McIntosh hit four straight 3-point attempts during its surge and Alex Alvarez opened the fourth quarter with another trey to give the Chiefs a 54-51 lead. After Kennesaw Mouintain's Joe Marlow hit two free throws to bring the Mustangs within one point, coach Jesse Bonner called timeout.
"Coach told us not to get big heads," said Omar Jimenez, who led the Mustangs with 28 points. "He said it was time for us to buckle down and stick to our principles, which was defense."
Not only did Kennesaw Mountain start making defensive stops after the timeout, the Mustangs started communicating better offensively and created more open looks on the perimeter.
After the Mustangs missed eight of their first nine 3-point attempts to begin the second half, shots from long range began falling. Tyler Brookins, who scored 21 points for Kennesaw Mountain, nailed a 3 from the right wing to reclaim the lead and start an 8-0 Kennesaw Mountain run.
McIntosh was called for a backcourt violation on its next possession and the Mustangs capitalized again when Jimenez connected from the right wing. Another defensive stop by the Mustangs led to a layup by Jimenez and the Kennesaw Mountain lead was back to seven at 61-54.
"The better teams depend on those 8-0 runs and we didn't get any until (the fourth quarter)," Bonner said. "That was the cushion we needed to win the game."
Kennesaw Mountain had to work late in the fourth to keeps its lead. McIntosh began nailing more 3s in the final two minutes to get back in it and a trey by Mike Williams cut the Mustang lead to 72-71.
But the Mustangs held McIntosh off at the end when Erik Edwards made three of his four free throw attempts.
"They shot the ball real well (in the second half) and had an opportunity to put us out of it," Bonner said. "But we hung in there and didn't hang our heads. The guys hung tough and I was proud of that."
Marlow led the Mustangs defensively with 11 rebounds.