3/2/2018 | Men's Basketball | Box Score
EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. -The calendar reads "March," so it's little wonder the No. 4 Bellarmine Knights had a March Madness type of game as they escaped with a win in their Great Lakes Valley Conference quarterfinal game against William Jewell on Friday night.
Bellarmine, the GLVC No. 1 seed, trailed nearly the entire first half before taking an eight-point advantage midway through the second period and hanging on for a 70-65 victory at the Vadalabene Center on the campus of Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.
The Knights were held scoreless from the 3-point line for just the second time in Coach Scott Davneport's 13-year tenure as Bellarmine went 0-10 from beyond the arc. Meanwhile the eighth-seeded Cardinals drained nine triples but made just 29 percent from deep as they launched 31 in the game.
"We get beat 27-0 from the three point line, have only five assists, turn the ball over 15 times, and we win the game; I don't know how," said Davenport after the game. He added that it ultimately came down to playing defense as a team. "They (the Cardinals) shoot 33 percent in the second half, and that's the game."
Adam Eberhard and Alex Cook each scored 19 points to pace the Bellarmine offense. Eberhard added nine rebounds and Cook eight as the Knights won the battle of the backboards 35-28.
For Eberhard, Friday's performance was particularly gutsy. The 6-8 sophomore turned his ankle so badly in practice on Monday that it broke his ankle brace. He got treatment and sat out until a light practice on Thursday.
"I said when I first took this job that it was going to take everyone, and tonight (Bellarmine Head Athletic Trainer) Brad Bluestone and his team did as much for this win as anybody. It's also a reflection of Adam's courage. He played 37 minutes tonight." Davenport said.
Brent Bach added 14 points for the Knights, making six of nine field goals. Danier Ramser accounted for 60 percent of Bellarmine's assists, handing out three of just five team assists. The assist total was the lowest for a Bellarmine team since the Knights managed just four against Northern Kentucky in a GLVC conference game on March 8, 2009.
The Knights had their shooting woes early in the game, missing a number of shot from close range. However, Bellarmine connected on 54 percent of its second half shots to finish the game at an even 48 percent.
The Cardinals, who got 22 points from Pharroh Gordon, had a hot hand early, but cooled to just 40.7 percent for the game.
Bellarmine helped offset the 3-point scoring disparity by draining 22 of 26 free throws (84.6%) while William Jewell made just 12 of 18 (66.7%).
The loss likely ends the William Jewell season at 20-9 while Bellarmine improves to 26-2. The Knights will meet the University of Indianapolis at 9:30 p.m. (8:30 p.m. CST) in the GLVC semifinals on Saturday. The Greyhounds were 66-56 winners over Maryville in the last quarterfinal game on Friday.