The Trinity Western University Spartans menâ€™s basketball team finished their California tour with a 77-60 loss to the Biola University Eagles Saturday afternoon at Chase Gym in La Mirada, Calf. The loss puts TWU at 0-3 over their tour of California.
The Spartans had four players hit double digits in scoring. Guard Tyus Allen had 11 points, while fellow guard Matt Blackaby and forwards Taylor Heinrichs and Denny McDonald had 10 points each. Heinrichs and guard Justin Bakuteka finished the night with five rebounds each. The Eagles top performers were Pierre Zook with 19 points, Dakari Archer with 18 points and six rebounds and Mike Kurtz with 11 points, nine points and two blocks.
Biolaâ€™s shooting percentage and free throw attempts were the difference in this afternoonâ€™s contest. The Eagles finished the game shooting 54.9 percent (28-51) from the field and 75 percent (15-20) from the foul line, while the Spartans finished at 38.7 percent (24-62) from the field and 100 percent (5-5) from the foul line. Biola also had the edge in rebounding at 32-31 and turnovers at 13-19.
The first half was evenly contested with neither team having greater than a six point lead. The first 20 minutes ended with the Eagles leading the Spartans by five points, 38-33.
The Spartans had a strong start to the final half. TWU opened the half with an 8-0 run to lead 41-38 three minutes in. The two squads went back-and-forth on the scoreboard with the Eagles leading by three points, 51-48, with 12 minutes remaining in the game after a dunk from TWUâ€™s Denny McDonald.
From that point on the Biola Eagles took control of the game. Over the next six minutes Biola would outscore TWU 14-4 to lead 65-52 with six minutes remaining. Biola would extend their lead to 19 points, before finishing with the 77-60 win.
The Spartans will now have some time off for Christmas before starting the second half of Canada West conference play at home on Jan. 9-10 against the Regina Cougars.