The Blackburn College Men's Basketball Team raced off to an early lead battled back from a couple of second half deficits to defeat Fontbonne University 89-83 in St. Louis in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference opener for both teams.
The Beavers took the lead early and went into halftime with a 45-37 lead. The Griffins battled back and tookthree leads at different times in the second half for which Blackburn had an answer for on each occassion. Fontbonne took a 77-75 lead with a three pointer with 3:14 to play. Jamie Moore answered with a three-point field goal of his own 22 seconds later followed by a Jake Maestranzi conventional three-point play as the shot clock was winding down and the Beavers took it home from there.
Chris Davis had 22 points to lead Blackburn in scoring, he was joined in double figures by Moore with 14, DeAndre Manuel with 12 and Maestranzi with ten. The Beavers out-rebounded the bigger Griffins by a 38-34 margin and won despite being whistled for 33 fouls compared to 19 for Fontbonne.
"We got in alot of foul trouble early and we had to rely on our bench, the reserves had to be ready and they were tonight and it showed in their performance," said Blackburn Coach Steve Kollar who garnered his first victory as a collegiate coach. "The win tonight embodies what this team is all about, getting off to the start we got off to this season it would have been easy to point fingers and fall apart but we stayed together and got stronger as a team," added Kollar.
The Beavers are 1-5 and now atop the SLIAC with a 1-0 record. Blackburn will host MacMurray College on Saturday in Carlinville with a 3:00 p.m. tipoff.