On Friday evening, the Alma College Men's Basketball team participated in the first day of the Bill Sudeck Holiday Classic in Cleveland, Ohio. The Scots took on host Case Western Reserve and lost a thrilling back and forth 101-99 two-overtime decision that could have gone either way.
With the defeat, Alma is now 4-6 on the season, while Case Western improved to 6-4 in 2012-13.
"It was an unbelievable college basketball game to be a part of," said Scots Head Coach Sam Hargraves. "A little sour at the ending because we broke down defensively in the second overtime. We left them open and they made us pay, as good teams do.
"Big test tomorrow against another very good team. How much of an effort can we give after going through a game like this."
Alma had a very early lead in the first half but Case Western eventually got into a groove and took control, leading 29-19 with 7:06 left in the frame. However, the Scots proceeded to end the half on a 16-2 run and went into the lockerroom with a 35-31 advantage. Jr. F Isiah Law (Grand Haven, Mich./Grand Haven) paced the visitors with 12 points on five of seven shooting.
The Scots led the Spartans by a score of 40-33 at the 18:36 mark of the second half after a three-pointer from Sr. F Greg Silverthorn (Shepherd, Mich./Shepherd) but the home team would go on a 13-5 run to take a 46-45 lead at 13:26. Case Western eventually increased that margin to 59-52 at the 8:04 mark.
However, the visitors would not go away and chipped away at the deficit and tied the game at 71-71 on a shot from beyond the arc by Fr. F DJ Beckman (Shelby, Mich./Shelby) with 26 seconds remaining. The shot sent the contest into overtime.
The first overtime was offensively successful for both teams and Case held the advantage for just about all of the five minutes. Jr. F Jacob Murawske (Harbor Beach, Mich./Harbor Beach) decided to keep the game going as he hit a three-pointer with seven seconds left, sending the game into a second overtime deadlocked at 85-85.
Alma held three different leads in the second extra frame and the score was never more than four points during the five minutes. Eventually, the Spartans took the upper hand and not even a late basket by Jr. G Brandon Krause (Sanford, Mich./Meridian) could help, as the home team walked off the court with the 101-99 victory.
Beckman led the Scots with 24 points, while Law and Krause had 17 and 15 respectively. Silverthorn had a team-high 12 rebounds and added five assists, two assists and seven assists. Sr. G Chris Williamson (Fowlerville, Mich./Fowlerville) came off the bench to contribute 15 points and a team-high six assists for Alma.
The Scots wrap up the tournament with a contest against the University of Chicago on Saturday afternoon beginning at 4:00 p.m.