Westminster Men's Basketball Drops Close Battle to Webster

Romo Tabb
Romo Tabb

FULTON, Mo. - After leading a majority of the game, Webster hit a late layup to take the lead from the Blue Jays and ultimately the 77-74 win.

The Blue Jays fall to 10-12 overall and 9-6 in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, tied with Spalding for third place. 

"This was a great game tonight as Historic," said Westminster Head Coach Matt Mitchell. "Our guys played their hearts out tonight against the best team in the league. It came down to a coupole key possessions and we couldn't hit a key shot or get a key stop. The good news is that the loss did not impact our position in the conference and we still control our own destiny."

The Gorloks took a quick 6-2 lead in the opening two minutes of the game, with both teams hitting a lull in the next six minutes, scoring a total of 12 points to make the score 12-8 with just over 12 minutes in the half. 

Makygh Galbreath sparked an 12-0 run for the Blue Jays with a three-point play, getting fouled on a drive to the lane, making the basket and the extra freethrow. Stu Hollandsworth followed the next possesion with a layup. Steven Brandt hit a baseline freethrow to extend the Westminster lead further, and hit his second three of the game after a Jak Kitchens freethrow to end the run and make the score 20-14 after the first 10 minutes of play, doubling their point total in just over two minutes. 

Both teams traded baskets in the following minutes with Westminster holding a small lead until the 4:29 mark when the Gorloks hit back-to-back shots for a 27-24 lead. Kobe Wands knocked down a key three-pointer to tie the game with under four to play in the half. Galbreath hit a three-pointer to give Westminster back the lead, but the next five possessions would feature five lead changes, with a Webster jump shot at the 1:11 mark giving the Gorloks the one-point advantage at the half, 35-34. 

Four points from Webster to open the half put Westminster down 39-34, but Hollandsworth kept Westminster within striking distance by scoring the first eight points of the half for Westminster, tying the game at 42 apiece with 15:55 to play. 

Kobe Wands then completed a four-point play with a made three-pointer and freethrow to put Westminster back in the lead. A completed three-point play and three-pointer in back-to-back possessions from Tabb gave Westminster its largest lead of the game at 52-45, but Webster quickly recovered with five straight points to come back within one possession. 

After a Westminster timeout, the Blue Jays went on a 9-0 run which included five points from Kobe Wands to mark the first double-digit lead of the game at 61-50 with just over 10 minutes to play, but the Gorloks again answered with a 7-0 run of their own to stay in the game, eventually coming back within one possession of the lead with under seven minutes to play. 

The Blue Jays continued to hold a small lead over the next several minutes, never allowing the Gorloks to take over the lead of the game despite coming as close as one point. With under a minute left, the Gorloks hit two freethrows to make the score 74-73 in favor of Westminster. A Blue Jay turnover in the next possession gave Webster a chance to take the lead, eventually scoring a layup with 15 seconds left to take the first lead since the 15:55 mark of the half. 

Webster made two freethrows in the final seconds to secure the win and their first-place spot in the conference. 

Three Blue Jays were in double figures, with Stu Hollandsworth and Kobe Wands leading the way with 18 points apiece. Tabb followed it up with 16 of his own, while Carter Wands added nine rebounds and four assists.

The Blue Jays remain at home, facing Principia Saturday for senior day. Tipoff is at 3 p.m.