Hitting free throws in overtime, the St. Francis Borgia Regional basketball Knights picked up another crucial Archdiocesan Athletic Association Large Division win Tuesday.
Borgia (5-5, 2-1) prevailed in O’Fallon over St. Dominic (6-4, 0-2), 61-53.
“It was a hard-fought game by both teams,” Borgia Head Coach Dave Neier said. “It was a game of runs. We would get a little lead and they fought back. We had a lead and they tied it at the buzzer.
St. Dominic led 10-9 after one quarter, but it was tied 25-25 at the half. St. Dominic held a 32-31 lead through three quarters.
Borgia was up late in the game, but St. Dominic came back and got the game-tying basket from Bryce Little after two offensive rebounds at the buzzer.
With the game tied at 43-43 going to the extra session, Borgia picked up another lead and was able to seal it at the free-throw line.
“Once we got the lead in overtime, they started fouling,” Neier said. “We really hit free throws in overtime to seal the win. We were lucky. We had a good night at the free-throw line and most seemed to be in overtime. Really, it was a one- or two-point game.”
Borgia scored 18 points in the four-minute overtime session, more than any eight-minute quarter during the contest.
The Knights hit 21 of 26 free-throw chances.
Cole Weber paced Borgia with 18 points while going 12-12 from the free-throw line. He also hit two of Borgia’s six three-point baskets. He also had four rebounds.
Alex Brinkmann was next with 17 points while going 5-6 from the free-throw line. Brinkmann pulled down a team-high six rebounds to go with four assists, three steals and a blocked shot.
Max Meyers scored 15 points with two three-point baskets and he went 3-4 from the free-throw stripe. Meyers also had three assists, two rebounds and a steal.
Trent Strubberg scored his six points on a pair of three-point baskets. He also had four assists and one rebound.
Andrew Patton scored two points and Andrew Dyson added one point. Patton also had five rebounds and a blocked shot.
Neier noted St. Dominic played without point guard Brendan Deters.
Ryan Schwendeman led the Crusaders in scoring with 19 points while Matthew Willenbrink was next with 15.
Schwendeman pulled down 10 rebounds with three assists, one blocked shot and one steal. Willenbrink also had two assists and two rebounds.
Anthony Lewis netted seven points while Luke Henke was next with six. Kyle Crawford, Tate Cross and Bryce Little scored two points apiece.
“The next time we play them, it will be entirely different,” Neier said. “We’ve got to work to get better.”
Borgia returns to AAA Large Division action with a home game Friday against Columbia’s Tolton Catholic. Tolton Catholic was ranked third in the Missouri Basketball Coaches Association Class 3 state poll Jan. 3. All five of Borgia’s losses so far have come to teams which have either been ranked or have received votes in the state polls.
The Knights play next week in the Washington Tournament. Borgia is the fourth seed and faces St. Charles Monday at 7 p.m. Borgia has played all three teams seeded higher, losing to top seed Washington but beating No. 2 St. Dominic and third-seeded Sullivan.