Eagles Drop Another Heartbreaker 59-58 To Adams State

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The Chadron State College men’s basketball team got off 2 shots in the final second Saturday night, but neither went in as Adams State hung on for a 59-58 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference win in the Chicoine Center at CSC.

Cold shooting, especially from long range, was the downfall for the Eagles. They shot just 37.7% from the field all told, but were only 14.3% (3-21) from 3-point range.  Thus, Chadron State managed only 58 points while the Grizzlies had given up an average of 78 points a game in their previous 20 games this winter.

“It’s frustrating when we make only three of 21 of our 3-point shots,” said CSC Coach Shane Paben. “Our defense kept us in the game and we played hard, but we needed to make more shots.” 

For the season, the Eagles have been shooting 35.8% from behind the arc. 

Both teams got off to a terribly slow start.  After the first five minutes just nine points had been score. The Grizzlies were ahead 22-15 with five minutes remaining in the first half, before the Eagles rallied to tie the score at 24-24 at intermission.

The teams traded baskets for the first four minutes of the second half, but Adams State held a 48-38 lead with 8:06 remaining.  Led by a dunk and a putback by center Porter Anderson and the team’s only 3-pointers of the second half, both by KJ Harris, the Eagles fought to get within striking distance.

Back-to-back layups by alternate guard Mason Heimstra, the second one after he’d stolen the ball, made the deficit just one point—55-54—with 1:17 left on the clock. 

Adams State’s leading scorer, Rylan O’Brien, hit two free throws with 33 seconds left.  Seven seconds later, Anderson made a layup for his ninth basket in 10 shots.  Then, after CSC guard CJ Jennings stole the ball, Heimstra took pass to the hoop for a layup to give the Eagles their first lead in about 16 minutes at 58-57 with 16 seconds remaining. 

But while attempting to keep Adams State from scoring, the Eagles fouled Kaelin Crane, who made both free shots with seven seconds showing to put his team back ahead 59-58. That became the final score when the hosts missed a 3-point attempt and an off-balance putback attempt hit the side of the rim as the buzzer sounded.

O’Brien, who was six of 11 from the field, including three 3-pointers, and made all five of his free shots, was the game’s top scorer with 20 points. Crane added 16 and Malik Moore 13 to go with a game-high 14 rebounds for the Grizzlies.

Anderson, who also grabbed nine rebounds, led the Eagles with his 9-of-10 sharpshooting, three of them dunks, with 18 points, his season-high. Jennings had both 11 points and 11 rebounds and Harris added 10 points.    

Adams State is now 10-11 for the season and 6-9 in the RMAC.  The Eagles, who will host CSU-Pueblo on Sunday night (Feb. 6), is 8-13 and 4-9. 

Adams State—Rylan O’Brien 20, Kaelin Crane 16, Malik Moore 13, Kolby Walker 4, Tyrin Hollis 3, Nykolas Lange 3. Totals: 21-54 (5-17) 12-14 59 points, 35 rebounds, 15 assists, 15 turnovers.

Chadron State—Porter Anderson 18, CJ Jennings 11, KJ Harris 10, Mason Hiemstra 9, Teddy Parham 6, Marcus Jefferson 2, Taj Toney 2. Totals: 23-61 (3-21) 9-11 58 points, 40 rebounds, 11 assists, 12 turnovers.

                Adams State             24            35            —-59
                Chadron State           24           34            —-58

                3-pointers: ASU—O’Brien 3, Crane 1, Lange 1. CSC—Harris 2, Jennings 1.

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