St. Norbert Men Move Into Second Place With Win at IC

From Sports Information Director, January 26, 2008 | Men's Basketball
by Dan Lukes, dan.lukes@snc.edu, (920) 403-4077

JACKSONVILLE, Ill. - The St. Norbert College men's basketball team moved into sole possession of second place in the Midwest Conference by rallying for a 67-62 win over Illinois College at Sherman Gym. The Green Knights are 10-6 overall and 6-3 in the MWC, and have won eight of their last nine overall. Illinois College has lost five straight in dropping to 7-8, 3-5.

St. Norbert overcame a sluggish first half of action when it shot just 29.6 percent from the floor with eight turnovers to trail 30-23 at intermission. Illinois College held a 30-18 lead with 4:01 left in the first half when it went on a 12-2 run over a six-minute stretch.

The Green Knights opened the second half on a 7-0 run, scoring on jumpers by Eric Bieniasz and Tom Katzfey, followed by a 3-pointer by Mike Dowden. Dowden paced the Green Knights in the second half, canning all five of his three-point attempts in the final 20 minutes of action to finish with a game-high 18 points.

Illinois College led 59-58 with 2:16 left on a layup by Mitchell Neally, but Dowden answered on the Green Knights' next possession to put St. Norbert ahead 61-59. Katzfey's layup with 45 seconds left but the Green Knights ahead 63-59. Bieniasz missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 23 seconds left and a three-point lead, but Illinois College missed a 1-and-1 of its own and the Green Knights made all four free throws in the final 10 seconds of the game.

Following Dowden's big afternoon, Katzfey added 10 points and Paul Mallers came off the bench with nine points. The Green Knights were 10-for-13 at the free-throw line and held a 29-21 rebounding advantage. St. Norbert shot 47.1 percent from the floor for the game and was a robust 16-for-24 (66.7 percent) from the floor in the second half.

Brad Johnson led Illinois College with 18 points, while Mark Gillingham added 11 points. Illinois College shot 52.3 percent for the game, making 23 of 44 shots, but had just three offensive rebounds.