The Eagles basketball team’s defense and rebounding certainly created a lot of scoring opportunities in last night’s contest against the at Lutheran.
The Cougars committed 15 turnovers in the 71-58 loss to Christian while the Eagles committed 10.
“In the Fox Tournament, we had two really tough games,” O’Fallon coach Dave Meers said. “We had a lot of defensive intensity. It was the name of the game for us tonight. The thing we really wanted to focus on was man-to-man and cutting off the lane, making them shoot outside. They did a good job of shooting outside at times and made us go out further than what we wanted to. They have some good outside shooters who are young. I thought we did a good job of keeping them out of the lane and minimizing the easy shots.”
Meers also felt his team capitalized on getting rebounds.
“Kameron (Dunlap) had a good effort on the boards and so did Ben Pickett,” he said.
Christian wasted little time in establishing dominance in the contest. Ben Pickett’s basket at the 5:52 mark in the first quarter kicked off a 7-1 run and the Eagles held a 9-3 lead at the 2:50 mark in the first quarter. Christian led 18-10 at the end of the first quarter.
“They were very aggressive,” Lutheran coach Michael Holtmeier said. “Their pressure changed how we had to play. They forced us to be strong with the ball and we had trouble with that and they just dominated the boards against us. They gained a lot of possessions from their rebounds and defensive pressure.”
Lutheran had a better second quarter, as it was outscored by two points (19-17) in the quarter. Matt Niewald’s trey at the 6:46 mark in the second quarter made the score 18-14 Christian. The Eagles quickly responded. Adam Glenville’s free throw at the 5:52 mark made the score 19-14. Glenville missed the second free throw, but Christian won the rebound and Glenville turned in a three-point play to make the score 22-14. The Eagles held a 35-29 advantage at halftime.
The Cougars continued to lead throughout the second half. Glenville’s field goal at the 7:40 mark in the third quarter ignited a 10-4 run to make the score 45-28 at the 3:14 mark. Christian led 57-37 at the end of the third quarter. Christian put together an 8-2 run between the 5:30 mark and the 2:32 mark in the fourth quarter. Daentrell Prince was responsible for six of the eight points in the run.
“He’s as quick as can be,” Meers said on Prince. “When he jumps at a dribble or jumps at a pass and takes off. It’s an easy break to the other end because of his quickness.”
Glenville led Christian’s offense with 20 points and Prince threw in 11. Chris Sheerin led Lutheran’s offense with 16 points and Niewald had 12.
The Cougars drop to 6-12 with the loss. O’Fallon improves to 12-4 with the win.