It was a tough battle as both teams struggled throughout the night. With the game tied at 17-17 to start the third quarter Hall started to get aggressive and it started with Max Bryant.
The senior guard went straight to the hoop for the bucket, but missed the free throw which was an issue for Hall throughout the varsity contest.
Braden Curran then connected on an up and under move before Bryant drove the lane and hit the short jumper to cap off a 9-0 run for the Red Devils and take a 23-17 lead.
“We weren’t very good in the first half and we talked about being more aggressive,” Hall coach Mike Filippini said. “I thought Max (Bryant) in particular got us started out the right way. I don’t know how many and ones he got, but he got the halftime message.”
Mason Ross ended the Bruins drought with a nice spin move in the lane and then Phillip Gray found Ross again and St. Bede cut the deficit to 25-21.
Bryant then hit a tough shot in the lane and got the free throw to fall and then moments later did the exact same thing to push the Hall lead to 35-25 forcing the St. Bede timeout.
Before the third quarter came to a close it was Payton Dye’s turn for the and one before draining the 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Red Devils a 42-27 lead headed into the final eight minutes.
“That third quarter was rough for us,” Bruins head coach Brian Hanson said. “Hall was aggressive and I don’t think we handled it well. We were reaching instead of moving our feet. We have a lot of growing to do as a team and I don’t mean height, but I think we can get there.”
As the missed free throws continued for Hall (15-30), the Bruins remained in striking distance. Ross again continued to play well in the post and cut the Hall lead to 45-35.
After a Bryant drive and bucket pushed the lead back to 12 points, Kaden Newman drained a 3-pointer for the Bruins and then Alex Ankiewicz did the same to make it 50-43, but Hall would come away with the 52-43 victory.
“I thought Mason (Ross) had a nice night especially in the second half,” Hanson said. “And before the foul trouble in the first half so did Newman. We say he’s like Vinnie Johnson who they called the microwave. When he heats up he’s tough. We just have to get that play from those guys at the same time and consistently.”
Back at the start of the game both teams started slow. Bryant drove the lane and found Joseph Bacidore for the easy bucket.
Several minutes later Bryant hit the fade away for a 4-2 Hall lead, but Newman gave St. Bede a 5-4 edge with a long range shot as did Halden Hueneburg for an 8-4 Bruins lead after the first eight minutes.
“I thought we started the game off strong with the first points coming on that dish from Bryant,” Filippini said. “But for some reason we never went back to it until the second half.”
St. Bede finished off an 8-0 run with a spin move in the lane from Newman and a 10-4 advantage. Caleb Bickett ended the run with a 3-pointer for Hall and then Dye connected on the drive to make it 10-9 St. Bede.
Bryant then hit a short shot in the lane, but the Bruins responded right away with another shot behind the arc from Newman to give St. Bede a 15-12 lead.
Bryant got the putback for Hall and then Jack Jablonski picked up the offensive rebound and kicked it to Bryant for the 3-pointer at the buzzer to tie the game at 17 going into halftime.
For the Red Devils, Bryant had a career high with 26 points for Hall while Dye added 11. For the Bruins Ross led with 16 while Newman added 10.
St. Bede returns to action at the Colmone Monday against Rock Falls at 6:30 while Hall plays Rock Falls Tuesday at 8 p.m.