Men's College Basketball

Hawks battle but fall short in exhibition loss to Cougars


Photo for the H-W/Patrick Clark
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Nov. 6, 2019 12:40 am Updated: Nov. 6, 2019 1:01 am

EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. -- Two exhibition losses to a pair of NCAA Division I programs have revealed a number of interesting things about the Quincy University men's basketball team.

First and foremost, the Hawks have some moxie.

"I'm really proud of how hard we played," QU coach Ryan Hellenthal said after Tuesday night's 61-52 loss to SIU-Edwardsville at the Vadalabene Center. "We played the game the right way. We showed some fight."

It's how the Hawks stayed in the game.

Down by 12 at halftime after a woeful first half offensively in which it didn't make a field goal inside the 3-point stripe, Quincy saw SIUE score on the first possession of the second half for its biggest lead of the game.

Yet, Austin Downing answered by scoring off a drive to the basket, and within 10 minutes, the deficit had been whittled to six.

"There are going to be nights where the ball doesn't go in, but we still have to stay the course," Hellenthal said. "I thought we did that. We never panicked."

The Hawks dug in defensively, took better shots offensively and exploited an edge on the glass.

Jonah Smith's 3-pointer with 9:30 to play pulled Quincy within 49-43, the closest the Hawks had been since the 11:23 mark of the first half.

They weren't done either. A Smith 3-pointer pulled the Hawks within 52-48 with 5:40 to go, and he made two free throws a minute later to get Quincy within 52-50.

The problem was the Hawks went the final 5:40 without a field goal, committed three offensive fouls in the final three minutes and allowed the Cougars to clean up the boards down the stretch,

SIUE grabbed 10 of the last 14 rebounds after the Hawks had outrebounded the Cougars the first 36 minutes.

"I thought for the most part for most of the night we neutralized the glass," Hellenthal said. "It got away from us a little bit there. We made a couple of questionable plays, and our guys have to understand our margin for error is very small. It's a great learning experience moving forward about how to close out games."

Smith led the Hawks with 18 points and nine rebounds off the bench. Tanner Stuckman added 13 points.

"For that kid to go get nine rebounds against a Division I opponent shows what kind of heart and toughness that kid has," Hellenthal said. "He competes every single possession both ends of the floor."

That will be needed this weekend as the Hawks open the season in the GMAC/GLVC Challenge in Findlay, Ohio. The Hawks face Cedarville on Friday and No. 17 Findlay on Saturday.

"Even though we lost, I think it's a great building piece for this weekend," Hellenthal said. "Obviously, this weekend is going to be tough, but this team has some toughness to get through adversity that I like and that we haven't had."

SIU-Edwardsville 61, Quincy 52

QUINCY

Stuckman 4-7 4-5 13, Briscoe 2-7 2-6 8, Fadika 1-3 2-2 4, Downing 1-7 0-0 2, Kovacevic 0-2 0-0 0, Smith 5-13 4-5 18, Moore 1-4 0-0 3, Garvie 1-1 0-0 3, Warren 0-1 1-2 1, Champagne 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 15-45 13-20 52.

SIUE

Williams 4-10 7-7 17, Uzuegbunem 3-5 1-3 7, Williford 2-10 0-0 4, Moore 1-6 0-0 3, Jackson 0-4 1-2 1, Adewunmi 5-8 1-2 11, Duling 3-4 0-1 8, Martin 3-4 0-0 6, S. Wright 1-5 0-0 2, L. Wright 1-2 0-0 2, James 0-1 0-0 0, Benton 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 23-59 10-15 61.

Halftime score--SIUE 34, Quincy 22. 3-point field goals--Quincy 9-29 (Smith 4-12, Briscoe 2-7, Stuckman 1-3, Moore 1-3, Garvie 1-1, Downing 0-2, Kovacevic 0-1), SIUE 5-16 (Williams 2-5, Duling 2-2, Moore 1-3, S. Wright 0-2, Williford 0-1, Adewunmi 0-1, L. Wright 0-1, James 0-1). Rebounds--Quincy 34 (Smith 9), SIUE 38 (Adewunmi 7). Assists--Quincy 12 (Briscoe 4), SIUE 13 (Williford 5). Steals--Quincy 5 (Smith 2), SIUE 7 (Williford 3). Blocked shots--Quincy 1 (Fadika), SIUE 3 (Uzuegbunem, Moore, Martin). Turnovers--Quincy 24, SIUE 17. Fouls--Quincy 21, SIUE 22. Fouled out--None. Officials--Drew Larson, Cody Crum, Kevin Charles Drive.