(Notre Dame, Ind.) A difficult shooting night had the Holy Cross Saints playing from behind the entire game against the visiting Cardinals of Andrews University. Despite coming back from a double-digit deficit in the second half, missed opportunities by the Saints offense hampered them from completing the comeback. The loss for the Saints was their sixth consecutive on the season.
Andrews, rated No. 5 in the latest United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA), jumped out early on the Saints after scoring the games first 13 points. Trailing 13-0, Zoe Bauer (Culver, Ind.), got the Saints on the board at the 15:03 mark of the first half.
The offensive struggles for the Saints continued over the course of the half as poor shooting and turnovers allowed the Cardinals to hold the lead at double figures for the majority of the half.
Dane Okuda (Huntington Beach, Cali.) scored the last basket in the first half making it a 31-21 Cardinals lead at the break.
Clayton Webb (Dallas, Tex.) led Holy Cross with 6 points on 3-for-4 shooting.
The slow first half shooting performance for the Saints had them shooting just 9-for-24 (32.1%) from the floor. Andrews was quick to take advantage of the Saints mistakes as they turned 11 turnovers into 14 points.
Andrews continued to put pressure on the Saints early in the second half as they extended their lead to 15 points less than six minutes into period.
Trailing 46-31 with 14:13 left to play, the Saints offense came alive as an 11-to-0 run cut the Cardinals lead to just four with 9:16 remaining.
A Yama Kader (Mission Viejo, Cali.) three-pointer made it a one point game with five and a half minutes to play. After trading baskets over the next five minutes, the Saints once again made it a one point game with less than 39 seconds left to play after Darrell McIntyre (Indianapolis, Ind.) knocked down 1-of-2 free-throws. Unfortunately for the Saints, they would never get any closer than that.
Andrews forward Jerome Murray knocked down two free-throws to make it a three-point game with 26 seconds left. The Saints now had one last chance to tie the game.
The zone defense of the Cardinals made it difficult for the Saints to get a clean look from three as Dane Okuda had to throw up a three-pointer with 2 seconds left that bounced off the rim into the hands of Tyler Wooldridge giving the Saints their sixth straight loss.
The Saints outscored Andrews 35-28 in the second half but hit just 6-of-15 free-throw attempts down the stretch.
Yama Kader came alive in the second half scoring 15 second half points while hitting 5-of-10 three-point shots. Kader finished with a game high 20 points.
Darrell McIntyre scored all 11 of his points in the second half and finished with an 11 point and 10 rebound double-double, his first of the season.
In the end, poor shooting from the field and free-throw line left the Saints with too many missed opportunities down the stretch.
With just six games left on the schedule, the Saints (10-14, 6-12 CCAC) will hit the road for two games next week first stopping in Whiting, Indiana to take on Calumet College of St. Joseph on Wednesday, Jan. 30th. The next home game will be Wednesday, Feb. 6th as they will play host to Purdue University-Calumet.