Asa Williams sends Saints marching home
Thursday night was junior guard Asa Williams' turn to shine as 3 of his game-high 21 points came on a huge three-point jump shot with 40.4 seconds to play giving the Diggers a 6 point cushion which they would extend to an 86-79 victory over Carroll College Thursday night at Kelvin Sampson Court. Williams was joined by three additional Orediggers in double digits as junior guard Caleb Bellach continued his MVP-worthy season with 19, super leaper Hayden Diekhans exploded for 18 and sharp-shooting Keeley Bake got a dozen.
The game was close throughout with Williams getting the first two points from the free throw line 12 seconds into the game, but Carroll would come storming back behind the shooting of Jonny Hillman for an early 8-2 lead. Bake and Diekhans would lead the Oredigger resurgence as Bake would score 8 straight for the Orediggers turning a 13-12 disadvantage into a 20-15 lead. The Saints were willing to play loose on Diekhans, a freshman out of Geraldine and Diekhans would make them pay scoring on a midrange jumper and a runner inside. Tech would take a 43-39 lead into the half.
The second half would start out with Brendan Temple picking up an "and 1" for the Saints who would tie the game up at 45 on a three pointer from guard Braden Koch. A long three pointer by Gui Pedra would briefly give the Saints a 56-55 lead. Very briefly. Caleb Bellach would lead the charge as the Orediggers would go on an 11-1 run over the next 4:11 to turn the one point deficit into a 10 point lead, 66-56 with 9:49 to play. The Saints would make a final run and pull to within 3 with under 3 minutes to play, but as if on cue, Williams would steal the show and the game for the Orediggers.
The 13th-ranked Orediggers improve to 14-2 on the season and will be back in action Saturday at 4pm, back at home, against the University of Providence.