(Chicago, Ill.) The Holy Cross Saints men's basketball team concluded their two-game road trip on Saturday in Chicago, Illinois against the Cougars of Saint Xavier University. In a game where the Saints found early success holding a four point lead, turnovers became an issue. The Cougars turned 20 Saints turnovers into 33 points on their way to a 95-77 victory over Holy Cross. This is the third straight loss for the Saints, and the first time they've had a three-game losing streak this season.
A dunk by Brandon Evans (Grand Rapids, Mich.) got the Saints on the board within the first minute of the game. At the 14:59 mark, Saints found themselves with a four point lead at 12-8 following two free-throws from Parker Dominguez (Santa Clarita, Cali.). A 10-to-3 run by the Cougars gave them a three point advantage at which they never looked back.
Michael Anderson (Indianapolis, Ind.) got the Saints to within four points with 5:09 left in the half before the Cougars used an 11-to-0 run over the next three minutes to extend their lead to 15 points. The Saints found themselves trailing 45-30 at the break.
While both teams shot the ball well from the field in the first half, the Cougars turned 13 Saints turnovers into 20 points. Conversely, the Saints were unable to turn any mistakes from Saint Xavier into points.
With the second half underway, the Saints found themselves down 19 following a three-pointer from Saint Xavier's Brad Karp at the 15:00 minute mark.
Turnovers still being an issue for the Saints, the Cougars were able to build a lead over 20 points for the majority of the second half as they cruised to a 95-77 victory over Holy Cross.
Brandon Evans led the Saints in scoring with 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting. Zoe Bauer (Culver, Ind.) chipped in with 10 points off the bench and Parker Dominguez scored 10 points while collecting 5 rebounds.
Running the point, Mike Vander Ploeg (Kalamazoo, Mich.) had a near triple-double with 8 points, 7 rebounds, and a season high 9 assists.
This was the sixth straight loss the Saints had against the Cougars and their first three-game losing skid of the season.
"We shot the ball well today but turnovers gave them way too many easy baskets," said coach Bob Schermerhorn. "We need to do a much better job taking care of the ball if we want to get back on track."
Saint Xavier was able to convert the 20 turnovers committed by Holy Cross into 33 points while also holding an advantage of 52-32 on points in the paint.
The Saints, 9-8 (5-7 CCAC), will return home on Tuesday, January 8th with a matchup against Purdue University-North Central. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. EST.