The Briar Cliff men’s basketball team started 2020 on a high note Thursday night with a 90-87 win over Hastings at the Newman Flanagan Center. After going down 12-0 to begin the contest, the Chargers battled back to make it a game. A huge block in the final minute by freshman Codey Hicks and clutch free throw shooting down the stretch helped the Chargers to their second GPAC win of the season.
“I am really proud of the way the guys fought back tonight after digging ourselves into that hole right off the bat,” said head coach Mark Svagera. “Codey Hicks came up with a couple big plays for us on both ends of the floor and to see a freshman do that in the big moments is huge.”
BC did not manage to crack the scoreboard until nearly five minutes into the contest and Coach Svagera called his second timeout of the night with 9:06 on the clock and his team down 27-15. That timeout proved to be a turning point as the Cliff outscored the Broncos 13-2 over the next three minutes and forced a Hastings timeout with a one-point difference on the scoreboard. Lamb and Austin Roetman each provided a key block in that time to hold the Broncos to just one basket. Hastings led 44-39 at halftime.
“The key to getting out of that early deficit was really staying the course,” said senior Jackson Lamb, who scored a game-high 37 points in the win. “We just stayed calm and kept chipping at their lead.”
The teams went back-and-forth through the majority of the second half, which featured three ties and seven lead changes. Hicks put the home team ahead for the final time with 2:38 remaining as he put back an offensive board for the 82-81 Charger lead.
As the Cliff clung to a one-point lead with 18 seconds on the clock, Hicks blocked a Bronco shot under the basket, allowing the Chargers to go the other way and earn a pair of free throws. BC went 6-for-6 from the free throw line over the final 60 seconds to seal the win.
“Cody was huge for us tonight,” added Lamb. “He’s a dude that works hard every day in practice and was bound to have a breakout game. He stepped up to the plate when Coach called his number and hit the ball out of the park. I am super proud of him.”
Lamb added seven rebounds, two steals and two blocked shots to go with his scoring output. The senior was a perfect 10-for-10 from the charity stripe and holds a 91.5 percent success rate from the line this season.
Jaden Kleinhesselink recorded his third double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 boards. Kleinhesselink also had a team-high four assists. Roetman finished the contest with 12 points, seven rebounds and two blocked shots. Hicks went 3-for-3 from the field for six points and added two assists.
As a team the Chargers went 16-for-17 from the free throw line and were 45 percent from the field and 31 percent from beyond the arc.
Bart Hiscock recorded 28 points for the Broncos and had a game-high 11 rebounds. Hiscock leads the GPAC in double-doubles this season with six. The Broncos shot 45 percent from the field, 37 percent from the 3-point line and 79 percent from the free throw line.
BC will go on the road to Midland Saturday to take on the Warriors in Fremont, Neb. Tipoff is scheduled for 4 p.m.