And they got their without starting center Luke Sprague, an integral part of the Bellarmine team.
No starting center. No problem.
Bellarmine 79, Kentucky Wesleyan 74. Bring on Alabama Huntsville in the Elite Eight.
So how exactly did Bellarmine do the tighten up and persevere?
For one, the undersized Knights offset a -11 deficit on the boards with a stunning 10 blocked shots. Mr. He’s Everywhere, He’s Everywhere Braydon Hobbs, a guard, mind you, was responsible for 7 of the rejections. When not tending to that chore, Hobbs also tallied 14 points and had 8 assists.
And he didn’t even win the MVP award. That went to running mate Chris Dowe, also a guard who had 10 boards to go along with his 21 points and 6 assists.
Sub Jelani Johnson had his best game as a Knight with 11 points.
Bellarmine scored first on a Jeremy Kendle jumper after the break, which the teams entered knotted at 31. Though it remained a dogfight, the Knights never surrendered that advantage.
Kendle tallied 19, and Richie Phares, subbing for the injured Sprague, scored 10.
– Seedy K