The St. Ambrose University men's basketball team was in need of a nice bounce-back game after Wednesday's loss to Augustana and the Fighting Bees got it Friday night.|
But it took a little longer than Coach Ray Shovlain wanted as the Fighting Bees trumped Emmaus Bible College, 100-56, in the St. Ambrose Classic at Lee Lohman Arena.
At the half, St. Ambrose led 47-31 and Shovlain wasn't pleased with how his guys were playing.
"I got on some guys at the half," Shovlain said. "I don't usually do that because I'm a laid back guy. We needed to find better shots and get the ball in the hole."
One player who was finding the hole was Darren Galloway. The junior had 20 points and was 8-for-10 from the field, including 3-for-3 from 3-point range.
"Fortunately for me, I was hitting a lot of my shots," Galloway said. "We started out shooting the ball really well, but other than that, we shot horribly in the first half."
SAU shot 42.2 percent in the first half before hitting 21 of 41 shots in the second half (51.2 percent). In the final 20 minutes, with mostly reserves on the floor, SAU outscored Emmaus, 53-25.
"I told the guys to pick it up in the second half," Shovlain said. "They did a great job responding and played much better for the remainder of the game."
The Bees made some nice halftime adjustments after Shovlain got after them at the break. They played disciplined defense as well as, not allowing Emmaus Bible College to get the free throw line in the game.
"It's a pride issue," Galloway said. "When you come up with a game like this and guys don't want to play or want to play, you got to make sure you defend your home court and please the fans. We did a better job of that in the second half."
With the score so lopsided, Shovlain was given the opportunity to rest his regulars for the most part in the second half as no starter played more than 16 minutes. Cambridge High school graduate Daniel Walsh was one of the guys getting some minutes on the floor and he took advantage. Walsh scored six points in six minutes, hitting two of three from 3-point land.
"We got to rotate some guys in that don't usually play," Shovlain said. "It was a good time to give a couple of those guys some floor time."
St. Ambrose turns around to play Benedictine-Springfield today at 3 in the second day of the SAU Classic. The Bees defeated Benedictine 79-65 on Nov. 28.
"It's another tough game," Galloway said. "But we beat them before. It will be a dogfight to the end this time."
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