by Gary Stepp
The Alice Lloyd Eagles traveled to Wilmore to battle the Asbury University Eagles on Monday, in a matchup that was postponed due to the recent snow storm. The contest was important, as it would determine seeding for the up-and-coming KIAC Conference Tournament scheduled to begin on Wednesday. The two combatants were tied at intermission, before the hosts prevailed by a score of 74-64.
It was a physical, fast-paced game, but ALC got off to a solid start. When big man Austin Brewer connected on back-to back inside moves, the visiting Eagles led by 11 (23-12) at the 6:57 mark.
However, Asbury was not willing to back down on senior day, and they closed the half on a late 19-8 explosion to knot the score at 31 by intermission.
In the second half, the two squads exchanged buckets for the first seven minutes. Cody Stumbo drained a hoop in the paint to give Alice Lloyd their last lead at 42-41 with 13:22 left.
Unfortunately for the visitors, the host Eagles went on a crucial 10-2 run over the next three minutes to suddenly jump ahead by 8 (52-44). Two hoops, courtesy of Tyler Rogers and Trevor Tiller, would reduce the deficit to 4 (52-48), with 9:32 remaining, but that was as close as the visitors would get the rest of the night, as the hosts were able to thwart a comeback.
For ALC (12-16;7-6 KIAC), Tiller led all scorers by tossing in 18 points (7-13 field goals, 4-4 free throws) and handed out 4 assists. Rogers added 13 points, 2 blocks, and 2 steals, while Stumbo chipped in with 10 points and 5 boards. Dondre Warren contributed 9 points, and tied guard Trevor Combs, with a team-leading 7 rebounds.
Asbury (19-10; 8-5 KIAC), who avenged an earlier season loss at Alice Lloyd, was led by Tyler Smith with 15 points. With the win, AU earns the second seed in the Southern Division.
On the night, Alice Lloyd shot 45.3% from the floor (24-53), including a frigid 17.6% from long range (3-17). AU shot 43.1% from the floor (25-58), and a chilly 27.3% from long distance (6-22).
ALC hit 76.5% of their free-throws (13-17) compared to the hosts 72 % (18-25). The victors also won the crucial battle of the boards, 37-31, and committed 13 turnovers to the visitors 20.
Alice Lloyd earns the fourth seed in the Southern Division and returns to action on Wednesday in the opening round of the 2015 KIAC Conference Tournament, where they will face the top seed and 21st ranked Indiana University Red Wolves (23-7). In the lone meeting this year between the two clubs on January 25th at East, the hosts sank a rebound bucket with 1 second remaining in the game to win a thriller, 77-76. This contest will be played in Richmond, Indiana at Earlham University. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 PM.