Grand Rapids, MI – The Tigers found another way to give a game away tonight, this time to Mount Vernon Nazarene University (NAIA II) 75-73. The Tigers led by as many as eight points down the stretch and seemed to be able to match MVSU score for score. The Tigers committed two costly turnovers on unforced errors that allowed the Cougars to cut the lead to two. On another turnover, the Tigers were called for an intentional foul. MVSU hit both free throws then scored on the inbound play to go up by two. Zach Schutte scored a two to tie the game at 73. The Cougars ran the shot clock down to 2 seconds and took a contested 18 footer that found the bottom of the net. With 1.7 seconds on the clock, the Tigers desperation shot failed to connect.
“This is the seventh loss out of ten that we have not finished the game by valuing every possession,” said Coach Bailey. “It is frustrating to lead the entire game and just give it away in the final minute. It is going to be a long season if we cannot learn to close out each game. To be 6-10 at this point knowing we could just as easily be 13-3 is pretty amazing. We have to learn the value of every possession before we can be a national caliber team.”
The Tigers were led by Zach Schutte with 23 points. Greg Salmon added 14 and Aaron Schutte and Cameron Cramer had 10 for the Tigers. BJ VanLoo and Zach Schutte each had 6 rebounds. Nick Mascorro dished out a game high 8 assists. Zach Schutte also had a season high 6 assists. The Tigers shot 47.5% while the Cougars hit for 55.8%.
Grace held a 31-23 advantage on the boards and a 26-20 advantage in assists.
The Tigers now have two weeks off until December 29th when they take on Cornerstone University at the Aldrich Center.