Sacred Heart racked up one trophy for the 2017-2018 campaign. Two more to go.
The Knights’ boys’ team would survive a late rally at Beloit with a 73-65 victory on Tuesday night.
Sacred Heart came in on an eight-game winning streak and needed just one win to win the North Central Activities Association outright. However, they were playing another tough road game with a program that is known for its basketball as well.
The Knights and Trojans played an even first quarter with Beloit leading most of the way. However, a Caleb Jordan floater with 3-seconds on the clock tied Sacred Heart and Beloit up at 15-15 at the end of the period.
Beloit would score the first points of the second quarter, however, Sacred Heart would follow with an 11-0 run to capture their first lead of the game. By the end of the run, Sacred Heart led by nine. Beloit answered to keep the rest of the first half close, but the Knights would close the half on a 9-0 run to take a 37-28 lead in to halftime.
Beloit cut the lead to six points early in the third, but another Sacred Heart run, led by Caleb Jordan and Charlie Skidmore would hold a nine point lead, 50-41 going in to the final quarter.
Sacred Heart appeared to grab complete control of the game early on in the quarter. The Knights would convert on a couple of 3-pointers and easy layups in transition to take a 62-45 lead with a little more than six minutes on the clock.
Beloit would not fold though. The Trojans continued to chip away at the lead with clutch 3-point shots of their own and Sacred Heart miscues on offense, the Trojans were able to get back in the game and make things interesting.
The score was 71-65 with 20-seconds left, however Beloit’s Vincent Palen would purposely miss the third of three FTs–after making the first two–which gave Sacred Heart a rebound, forcing a foul by the Trojans.
Sacred Heart’s Trace Leners would knock in two huge FTs to seal the deal and give the Knights their ninth win in-a-row.
Beloit (10-7, 6-4 NCAA) made things difficult for Sacred Heart all night. Palen led the way with 23 points and Carson Cox added in 17 points.
Sacred Heart (15-3, 10-0 NCAA) has won their 38th league win in-a-row and their fourth-straight league title. C. Jordan paced the way for the Knights with 21 points. Skidmore had 18 and Cole Elmore was solid with 10 points.
The Salina Ortho “Player of the Game” was Caleb Jordan’s little brother, Josh Jordan. J. Jordan had a career-high 12 points in varsity action off of the bench that helped Sacred Heart win the game. He has been seeing more playing time for the Knights, who once again were without their big man, Grant Herrenbruck due to an injury. Sacred Heart travels to Republic County on Friday.
Beloit 58, SACRED HEART 31
Sacred Heart just couldn’t keep up with the giant players of Beloit and the Sacred Heart girls’ team would suffer its fourth-straight loss.
The Knights kept things close in the first quarter, handling Beloit’s man-to-man defense. Sacred Heart trailed just 15-10 after one.
However, Beloit would change defenses in the second quarter and shift to a 2-3 zone in which Sacred Heart couldn’t make enough perimeter shots to keep up. The Knights were outscored in the second quarter, 16-3 and trailed 31-13 at halftime.
The Knights would never threaten in the second half. As Beloit (14-3, 9-1 NCAA) would see another big night from their 6’2 forward, Sydney Johnson, who racked up 14 points and 18 rebounds. Sydney Barrett added in 11 points, while Shea Larson had 10 for the Lady Trojans.
Sacred Heart (4-14, 3-8 NCAA) were once again held to below the 40 point mark and the Knights couldn’t get anything going inside against the taller Beloit post players.
The Salina Ortho “Player of the Game” for Sacred Heart was Ally Cochran who played hard all night and was the Knights’ only scorer in double-figures with 10 points.
Sacred Heart looks for another sweep of Republic County on Friday, this time the games are in Belleville–home of both Sacred Heart team’s 2A Sub-state tournament in two weeks.–Coverage of Sacred Heart basketball is on FM 104.9 and tip times are at 6/7:30 p.m., Friday.