ST. LOUIS, Mo.—The Fontbonne University men's basketball team had hopes of getting back on the winning track against Webster, however, the Gorloks defense stood up in the final minutes and held on for the 79-73 win.
With 1:30 on the clock, Fontbonne trailed 74-73 after Erich Schark made both of his free throws. The team eventually got the ball back with 1:05 left, but on the inbound play, the team turned it over and that allowed Parker Van Nest to drain the corner 3-pointer to make it 77-73.
The Gorloks forced another turnover on the ensuing possession and they were able to drain a couple free throws for the six-point win.
Fontbonne (3-16; 1-11 SLIAC), shot 45.2 percent from the field, but went just 14-of-25 (56.0 percent) from the charity-stripe.
After being held to under 10 points the last two games, Kris McCann bounced back in a big way, finishing with a team-high 20 points on 8-of-15 shooting. Schark went 3-of-4 from the field to end with 10 points off the bench, while Jared Woodcock netted nine points and tied Noah Coddington with eight boards.
Webster (10-9; 7-5 SLIAC), shot 45.2 percent overall and saw four out of its five starters reach double-figures. Leading the charge on the inside was Nigel Wilcox's game-high 21 points on 9-of-13 shooting. Christian Crespo and Josh Johnson ended with 14 each, while Enrique Tankins added 10 points and a game-high five assists.
The Griffins offense started out fast in the first half as they opened with a 12-5 lead on Garrett Goodnight's bucket and that forced Webster to take a timeout.
Out of the break, Webster chipped away at the deficit and narrowed it down to two on multiple occasions. However, the Griffins knocked in the necessary shots still to lead 27-23 on McCann's jumper at 6:05.
At 4:20, Tristan Baker went 1-of-2 from the line to give Fontbonne a 30-25 lead. Webster answered with a 6-0 run in two minutes and seven seconds to take a 31-30 advantage on Elijah Macias' jumper. The two teams went back-and-forth the final minutes of play, though Webster still led 35-34 at the break.
In the second half, both offenses shot over 50.0 percent from the field, but Fontbonne trailed 57-52 at the 11:01 mark. After a bucket from Coddington, McCann, gave the Griffins its first lead of the half at 58-57 (8:35).
The up-tempo play continued as the clock ticked away. Then, at 4:36, McCann made his shot and was fouled on the play. He went on to sink the free throw to give the home team a 66-63 lead.
Things were still looking good for the Griffins as Woodcock grabbed an offensive board off a missed free throw and scored the put-back to put them out in front, 71-67 (3:24). However, Webster went on a 7-0 run to take a three-point lead and with its defense forcing two key turnovers on consecutive possessions, they hung on for the wild win.
The Griffins look to bounce back and split the season series against Greenville on Wednesday night. Tip-off goes up at 8 p.m.
Fans make sure to stay updated on fontbonnegriffins.com throughout the year for full updates and recaps on the men's basketball team.