The Westminster men's basketball team fell to Greenville on Wednesday evening, 114-97, but remain tied for first place in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC). The Westminster Blue Jays move to 7-10 on the season and are in a three-way tie for first place in the SLIAC with a 7-4 record.
The Greenville Panthers took a 5-0 lead to start the game, but freshman Carter Wands and senior Matt Murphy combined for six to bring the Blue Jays within one, 7-6. Sophomore Romo Tabb knotted the game at 7-7, but the Panthers found an 8-0 run to take the lead. The Panthers maintained their lead until Murphy started a 7-0 run with a traditional three-point play to bring the Blue Jays within one, 29-28. Freshman Stu Hollandsworth made two jump shots to take the lead with 7:42 to play, but the Panthers took back the lead. Hollandsworth scored three more to steal back the lead, and the Blue Jays took a six-point lead with a basket by sophomore Jimmy Villalobos. The Panthers sparked a 10-0 run in just over a minute to take a 50-47 lead with 1:11 left in the first. Hollandsworth scored the final basket of the half to bring the game to 53-51, Greenville.
Greenville made two three-pointers to start the second half, putting them up 59-51. The Panthers extended their lead to 11 points, but two free throws from sophomore Nick Carlos put the Blue Jays within nine. Greenville went up by 16 with 14:20 to play, and extended their lead to 19 with 10:56 on the clock. Villalobos and junior Zach Nelson each went 2-for-2 from the foul line to cut the deficit to 84-69. The Blue Jays kept the Panthers within 20, but were unable to cut the deficit, ending the game at 114-97.
The Blue Jays had five players with 15+ points and were led by Carlos with 17. Villalobos went 5-for-5 from the field and pulled down eight boards. Hollandsworth went 7-for-8 from the field.
The Blue Jays travel to Mt. Pleasant, Iowa on Saturday, January 30, for a conference game versus Iowa Wesleyan, also tied for first in the SLIAC. Tip-off is at 3:00 p.m.