The Tigers were back home Thursday night for the first time since December 3 and gave the home crowd an exciting game in defeating 2011 USCAA National Champion Andrews University, 80-72.
Andrews’ Matthew Little scored 34 including 6 three pointers but the Tigers countered with senior John Oostema’s (Grand Rapids Christian) 7 three pointers and 25 points. Ryan Dame (Wayland) played another outstanding game with 17 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists, and 3 blocked shots. The 6’7″ junior is playing the best ball of his career in the last couple of weeks. Senior captains Cory Jamieson (Wayland) with 13 and Matt Kurtz (Lowell) with 11 also reached double figures. Grace also received solid play off the bench from juniors Aaron Schutte (Sioux Center) and Greg Salmon (Wayland) and freshman Jake Blauwkamp (Grandville).
The Tigers led by as much as seven in the first half but Little’s shooting kept the Cardinals in it and Grace led at the half by only 3, 42-39. The Tigers stepped up with more intensity on defense in the second half and played patiently on offense to hold off the Cardinals.
The Tigers next game is against crosstown NCCAA rival, #4 ranked Kuyper College, on Tuesday, January 24 in the annual Cross Cup game.