Holy Names no match for men’s basketball

Men’s basketball wins big against Holy Names University in the earliest season opener in Biola’s history.

Nathan Palatsky, Writer

Biola men’s basketball began the season ranked No. 17 in the NAIA Division I pre-season polls. In the earliest season opener in Biola’s history, the men disassembled Holy Names University. Their leading scorer came off the bench and the Eagles overwhelmed the Hawks 81-61 to get the season off on the right foot.

Biola controlled the flow of the game with effective use of their big men. Two-time All-GSAC honoree, 6-foot-9 senior center Rocky Hampton, had 14 points and 8 rebounds.

“Their inside game was simply better than us tonight, “ said Holy Names head coach Dennis Jones. “They are a seasoned team and the experience shows.”

The experience he referred to is centered on the Eagles returning all five starters from last year’s team that went 22-10 and 13-7 in GSAC. But the player of this game was 6-foot-9 junior forward Andrew Schroeder, who didn’t even start for Biola but came in and proceeded to tally 18 points, 8 rebounds and 2 assists in 23 minutes while shooting 9 of 10 from the floor.

“We are just stoked to play together,” Schroeder said, “The team is really getting along great right now.”

Other top scorers for Biola were 6-foot-4 senior guard Danny Campbell who netted 12, and 6-foot-4 junior guard Nate Rakestraw added 10 points and 8 rebounds. Senior starting point guard Marlon King had 8 points and 7 assists.

Each team attempted 63 shots, and an important theme of the game was the shooting percentage. Biola shot 55.6 percent compared to Holy Names only shooting 34.9 percent. Holy Names was also hurt by only converting 8 of 30 from the free throw line, a paltry 26.6 percent. The Eagles dominated on the boards, grabbing 43 rebounds to HNU’s 26. A big part of the difference was in the defensive rebounds, which Biola won 30-15. The game’s scoring leader was Holy Names’ forward Joshua Smith who had 20 points on 7 of 14 from the field, including 4 of 8 from three-point land.

Dr. Dave Holmquist is entering his 30th season as the Eagles head coach.

“We have a lot we can build on. We want to keep getting better, “ Coach Holmquist said after the game. “We played well against a quick team. There are definitely areas to improve on…it’s nice to have more depth this year.”

Schroeder was excited about the team moving forward from here.

“We have to keep working hard. We are older, wiser, smarter, better, stronger than last year.” he said. “Put any word in there you want.”

It was the first October game for men’s basketball in school history, said Coach Holmquist. They will go on the road for three in November, before the next home game, and season opener against GSAC favorite and pre-season No. 9 Fresno Pacific University on December 1st at 7:30 p.m.

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