Consistent scoring throughout the game lifted the Lutheran South Lancers past the St. Francis Borgia Regional Knights in the Union Tournament third-place game Saturday, 57-52.
“They’re a well-coached team and they play well together,” Borgia Head Coach Dave Neier said. “Everybody on the court can score and they’re good players. That makes it tough guarding them. They have some good three-point shooters, so they really spread you out. They do a good job screening and cutting to the basket and they made some nice cuts to get open shots. Our guys weren’t in position to guard them like they should and that ended up really costing us.”
Lutheran South (11-6) found ways to score throughout the contest, whether it was pushing on the fast break or getting the ball inside to the big players.
Borgia (10-8) hit skids throughout the contest, but never fell out of contention.
Lutheran South led 18-16 after one quarter, but Borgia hit a run and led at the half, 30-24.
“We finally got some shots and controlled the boards for a while,” Neier said. “We played with enthusiasm on both ends of the court. What a difference that makes. After we got the lead, it seemed that we got a little flat.”
The Lancers got hot again in the third quarter and took the lead once again midway through that period. It was 45-36 for Lutheran South at the end of the third.
“We had a lead going into the second half and they really did a good job defensively,” Neier said. “We didn’t do a very good job of screening or getting guys open and they made it tough on us. They picked it up and we didn’t. I think defensively, we didn’t move or communicate enough and they were getting some wide-open shots.”
Lutheran South led by 11 with 1:39 left in the game, but Borgia was able to cut that lead down to five by the end of the contest.
Josiah Yaeger, one of two Lutheran South players to make the all-tournament team, was the leading scorer for the Lancers with 18 points.
Jacob Reis was next with 12 points, including one of the team’s four three-point baskets. No player hit more than one.
Jack Lawson checked in with nine points. Jack Wagner, the other all-tournament pick, netted eight points.
Evan Mulhauser scored five points, Austin Reis added three and Jonathan Prange had two points.
“They had a great semifinal game against Kirkwood,” Neier said. “We knew they were going to be tough and they certainly demonstrated that.”
Cole Weber led Borgia in scoring with 12 points, all on three-point baskets. He also had three rebounds, two assists and a steal.
Borgia hit eight three-point shots and that’s what kept the Knights in the game in the second half.
Will Elbert was next with 11 points. He went 3-3 from the free-throw line. Borgia was 6-10 from the stripe in the game. He had three rebounds and one assist.
Trent Strubberg netted eight points while Brendan Smith checked in with seven. Smith was Borgia’s all-tournament selection.
Strubberg added four rebounds, four assists and two steals. Smith also had three rebounds, two blocked shots and one assist.
“We had a lot of guys who played well in this tournament,” Neier said. “We did have some lulls as a team and that’s what we have to work on. Congratulations to Brendan. He did a nice job and was a little more aggressive offensively in this tournament taking the ball to the basket. He got some big points for us and was a little more aggressive on the boards.”
Mark Maguire scored six points on a pair of three-point shots. Alex Brinkmann also ended with six points.
Ryan Kell added two points.
Maguire also pulled down a rebound. Brinkmann had three rebounds, two assists and two steals.
Kell alos had three steals and one assist.
Max Meyers added two steals and one assist.