The No. 3 Bellarmine Knights rolled past the visiting RedHawks of Martin Methodist College 90-42 to record their 50th straight home victory on Saturday night in Knights Hall.
The outcome was decided early as Bellarmine (11-0) bolted out to a 20-0 lead and was never seriously challenged by the NAIA school from Pulaski, Tennessee. The 48-point victory margin ties for the seventh-largest in Bellarmine school history.
“The only negative of the whole night was the 10 turnovers and just nine assists in the first half,” said Bellarmine Coach Scott Davenport. “The great thing was nobody played more than 24 minutes, and now it’s a 16-game run, possession by possession,” he said, referring to the fact that the Knights close their season with 16 Great Lakes Valley Conference games.
Preseason All-American Adam Eberhard turned in another outstanding performance for the Knights, recording a double-double with 18 points and 10 rebounds while adding five assists in just 19 minutes of action.
In spite of those impressive numbers, Davenport said Eberhard’s best play came when he dove on the floor to save a ball from going out of bounds then sprinted down the court and tipped in a missed shot. “It didn’t take talent to dive on the floor, and it didn’t take talent to sprint down to the other end,” Davenport said. “That’s the heart of an All-American, not the talent of an All-American, and that’s how leaders lead.”
As a team, Bellarmine was efficient on both ends of the floor, holding the RedHawks to just 27.6 percent shooting while draining 58.2 percent of their own field goal attempts. The Knights also controlled the backboards with a 47-23 advantage in rebounding.
Thirteen different players hit the hardwood for the Knights with 11 finding the scoring column. Joining Eberhard in double figures were Brent Bach with 17 and Alex Cook with 14.
J.J. Jones paced Martin Methodist (1-12) with nine points and eight rebounds.
The RedHawks were playing without Head Coach Scott Combs, who missed the game to attend the funeral of his father, Vic Combs, in Paoli, Indiana. “I sure wish Coach Combs the best,” Davenport said. “I told their team to be sure and take of their coach.”
Bellarmine’s next action comes Thursday night when it hosts Maryville in a GLVC contest at 8 p.m. The Saints improved to 10-2 earlier today with an 88-65 victory over Eureka College.
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by John Spugnardi