It was a special night in more ways than one for the Columbia Eagles boys hoops team Saturday in the Freeburg Holiday Tournament.
They cruised to a 72-27 victory over Lovejoy to advance to the tourney semifinals, giving head coach Mark Sandstrom his 250th career win in the process.
The Eagles will face defending tournament champion Marquette at 6:30 p.m. on Monday. After defeating Waterloo on Friday, Marquette defeated Lebanon on Saturday night.
Columbia led 25-5 after the first quarter and 45-15 at the half over an undermanned Lovejoy squad, and continued to pour it on in the second half while playing mostly backups.
Korbin Farmer, a 6-foot-6 junior, led the Eagles with 14 points, followed by 6-foot-3 junior Drew Huebner with 12 points. Ryan Gudeman added 11 points.
For a recap of Columbia’s Friday win over Triad, click here.
Bulldogs bounce back
Following a tough defeat on Friday to Marquette in a game in which they led by five points at the half, the Waterloo Bulldogs changed up their lineup in an attempt to jumpstart the offense. The move seemed to work as the Bulldogs posted a 72-43 win over Lebanon on Saturday afternoon.
The ‘Dogs (4-7) will face conference foe Triad at 3:30 p.m. on Monday.
Following a sluggish start to the game, Waterloo went on a 22-2 run in the second quarter and turned on the afterburners.
“Yesterday was a real heartbreaking game. We decided to shake up the lineup a little bit and see if we could add some scoring punch,” Waterloo head coach CJ Cruser said following the game. “We knew we might lose a little bit on the defensive end, and that kind of happened early. And then we got in the flow.”
Sophomore Ben Huels, one of the new additions to Waterloo’s starting five, led a balanced scoring attack with 12 points in the win. Three others scored in double figures — Sam Dodd, Max Schrader and Lance Mueller each scored 10 points.
Ten different Bulldogs scored in all.
“We accomplished pretty much all the things we wanted to do today,” Cruser said.
For a recap of Waterloo’s loss to Marquette on Friday, click here.
Valmeyer falls again
The Valmeyer Pirates lost their second game of the tourney, 76-31, at the hands of Piasa Southwestern, who also advanced to the tourney semifinals.
Griffin Siedler led the Pirates with nine points for the game.
Valmeyer will next play Dupo, who is also 0-2 in the tournament, at 2 p.m. on Monday.