BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
DONNELLSON – Despite only scoring 11 first half points, HTC came within a bucket of winning their fourth straight on Tuesday.
However, a 16-point third quarter wasn’t enough for the Crusaders to beat Central Lee Tuesday night in Southeast Iowa Superconference South action in Donnellson as HTC fell 38-40.
Holy Trinity Head Coach John Hellige said his players may have been suffering a bit of fatigue from playing back-to-back games but said his team just didn’t convert shots.
That may have been evident in a second quarter where HTC only managed to score three points. But the Crusaders came back with a flurry in the second half and outscored their hosts 27-17 but the rally ran out of time.
“We were flat all night. We played hard, but we just didn’t hit our shots,” Hellige said.
“I’m very proud of the effort we got tonight. We played extremely hard in the second half, but we just fell short.”
Senior Cory Hopper once again led the way for HTC with 19 points going 7 of 21 from the field including three 3-pointers and converted both free throws. No other HTC players scored in double figures. Jack Stinson had nine points for the Crusaders, but yanked down 10 rebounds to lead the team in that category.
“We just didn’t have our legs after back-to-back nights, but our focus will quickly move to our Friday rematch with Danville,” Hellige said.
Senior Nick Pothitakis hit two-three pointers for six points on the night, followed by Connor Hellweg and Bailey Merschman each with 2 points.
In the junior varsity matchup, the Crusaders also took it on the chin losing 42-38 after making a wild comeback attempt in the final two minutes, going on a 6-2 run at the two-minute mark to close the gap to three with a minute left at 37-40 but couldn’t hold on in the last minute.
Scoring for the Crusaders were Reed Fehseke with 10 points, all in the 2nd half, Ryder Brune had 9 points, Quentin Schneider and Kyle Bredemeyer had 6, Matt Hellige had 4 and Blake Crabtree added 3.