The Tabor College men battled two challenging teams during their Holiday Classic, but the results didn’t do much to feed the holiday spirit.
The Bluejays received a 92-66 pasting from Hastings College on Saturday after losing 71-66 to Valley City State on Friday
Hastings—The Broncos from Nebraska scored the first six points of the game, but Tabor pulled to with 6-5 when Jon Manjon Beristain scored in the paint at the 16:40 mark of the first half.
Unfortunately, the Broncos followed with a 20-8 knockout blow to the midway point of the first half for a 26-13 lead. By halftime, the spread was 53-30.
Playing Hastings even in the second half was some consolation for Tabor, but the Bluejays never made a serious run at their opponent as time drained away for the 92-66 final tally.
“They shot the ball extremely well, and the adjustments we needed to make just didn’t happen,” coach Micah Ratzlaff said. “They put four guys in the lane, like everybody likes to do, and we didn’t shoot the ball very well.
“It was a combination of them being on the same page, and what we tried to take away seemed to backfire for us.”
DeShun Patterson was the lightest bulb for Tabor, scoring 21 points. Diontre Cutliff added 10 points for a Bluejay team that shot 34 percent from the floor and 23 percent from behind the arc.
For Hastings, Bart Hiscork led all scorers with 25 points, Kevin Miller added 18 and Connor Musiel 15. As a team, Hastings blistered the nets at 53 percent.
The biggest discrepancy between the two teams was rebounding. Tabor managed 26 for the game while Hastings grabbed 54.
“I told the guys we didn’t get beat for 40 minutes, but we did get beat for 20 minutes,” Ratzlaff said. “But we got beat so bad in that 20 minutes that it didn’t matter. They were impressive.”
With the Holiday Classic losses, Tabor’s record falls to 7-7 for the season. Hastings improved to 11-6.
Valley City State—An abysmal second-half scoring drought thwarted a Bluejay victory as Tabor suffered a 71-66 defeat to Valley City State Friday.
The Bluejays trailed only by two at halftime, 38-36, recovering from what had been a 31-20 deficit at the 7:02 mark. A 16-7 effort in the final seven minutes, led by Julian Winton with seven points, helped right the ship.
After halftime, the Bluejays took the lead, then went ice cold. Tabor made its last field goal—a three-pointer by Alex Arnold—with 12:03 to play. At that point, the Bluejays led, 58-52. But the Bluejays managed just eight free-throws after that. The Vikings, meanwhile, scored 19 points to claim the five-point win.
“Defensively, we just get beat up,” coach Micah Ratzlaff said. “A lot of it’s ball movement. The first 10 minutes of the second half, we’d get stops, so we’d get out in transition. When (we) get stops, we get out and get some easy buckets. That’s what we do. When they score and we’re coming into half-court sets, we struggle. We have all year. That’s the difference. We didn’t have enough ball movement.”
Winton and Alan Urrutia carried the team. Winton scored 21 points; Urrutia scored 18. Jordan Horstick remains benched because of injury.