FREEBURG – Payback proved sweet for the Civic Memorial High boys’ basketball team Tuesday night.
Just ask 6-foot-8 senior center Jakob Lowrance.
He scored a game-best 21 points to send the Eagles past Marquette Catholic, 40-33, for third place in the 58th annual Freeburg-Columbia Holiday Tournament. The 8-5 Eagles lost to the 10-4 Explorers, 45-43, in overtime back on Dec. 2 in Bethalto.
“It was pretty big to beat them,” Lowrance said. “You always want to beat Marquette and we weren’t happy with the first game we played against them.”
They were happier this time, thanks to Lowrance and 6-1 freshman JaQuan Adams. It was Adams tallying all of his eight points in a reserve role during the third quarter that really spurred CM.
Then Lowrance netted 11 of the Eagles’ 13 points in the fourth quarter to complete the comeback. Marquette led 17-12 at half and 27-24 after three quarters.
“He (Adams) gives us a different dimension. He makes us quicker,” CM coach Doug Carey said. “And he’s only going to get better.”
Lowrance added, “JaQuan is fast and he can take it to the hoop. That’s what we needed.”
Marquette coach Steve Medford noted, “Their freshman (Adams) killed us. He was really good and he took it to the basket four times in a row against us in the third quarter.”
Yet it was Lowrance pointing the Eagles in the right direction in the closing minutes. His three-point play with 2:49 remaining shot CM in front 34-33. Lowrance then contributed four free throws after that as the Eagles scored the game’s final nine points.
“Lowrance had a few nice plays on us late in the game, but we didn’t answer back,” Medford said. “We need to have somebody other than Shandon Boone step up for us.
“We just couldn’t make shots.”
Boone’s 15 points powered the Explorers. He connected on a trio of treys in the second quarter as three-time defending tournament champion Marquette built a six-point advantage. Overall, he made 6 of 12 shots.
However, the rest of the Explorers were just 6-for-21 with their shooting and they combined for only 18 points. Lowrance and Adams teamed for all but 11 of CM’s points.
“I think we executed our offense and we got good looks,” Medford said. “But we had trouble making our shots.”
CM sank just 4 of 16 shots in the first half, then made 10 of 20 field-goal attempts the second half. Adams was 4-for-4 overall and Lowrance was 6 of 13. He also hit on all nine of his foul shots. CM was 11-for-11 from the free throw line.
“I started going to the basket more in the fourth quarter,” Lowrance said. “No matter what, I was going to do that. And we got the job done.”
Carey pointed out, “We were more aggressive in the second half because we came out and took the ball to the hole. That was something we needed to do.”
Columbia defeated top-seeded Southwestern, 68-51, for the tourney title – its first since 2008. The Piasa Birds are 12-3. Waterloo downed Sparta 47-33 for fifth place and Triad slipped by Freeburg 57-52 for seventh place. Valmeyer topped Lebanon, 54-49 for ninth place and Lovejoy shaded Dupo, 48-45 for 11th place.
Lowrance, Boone and Marquette’s Max Goepel were named to the all-tournament team. Jonathan Holmes of Columbia was selected the MVP. Teammates Ryan Guedeman and Korbin Farmer joined him on the squad, along with Jacob Mueller of Freeburg, Briston Johnson and Tyler Rose of Southwestern, Noah Moss of Triad and Rick Wiegand of Waterloo.
The tourney, which began in 1957, returns to Columbia next December.
FREEBURG-COLUMBIA HOLIDAY TOURNAMENT
CM 40, MARQUETTE CATHOLIC 33
CM 6 6 15 13 – 40
Marquette 5 12 7 9 – 33
CM (8-5) – Lowrance 21, Hill 5, Lane 4, Adams 8, Hampton 2. 2FG-13 3FG-1 FT-11 PF-11
Marquette (10-4) – Boone 15, Fischer 5, Goepel 6, Sebacher 7. 2FG-8 3FG-4 FT-5 PF-11