The Seward County Saints defended the Greenhouse Saturday night, earning a 79-70 victory over the Allen County Red Devils to jump up two spots in the Jayhawk Conference standings.
Allen opened the game with a 9-4 lead, but a three from Tre Kidd got the Saints back in it five straight from Charles Beauregard moments later made it a one point game, 13-12. It was tough mudding for both sides through the middle portion of the first half and remained a one point game at 22-21 with 5:42 to go in the period. A Malik Brown free throw tied the game with 2:39 remaining in the half and a monster dunk by Beauregard brought the Greenhouse crowd to their feet and put the Saints in front 28-26. That was the lead that Seward took to the locker rooms at half as they led the Red Devils 32-30.
A bucket from Martavious Wilson on the inside and four straight from Deionta Nunnelly out of the half quickly stretched the Saints lead to eight at 38-30, Seward never trailed again. After Allen cut it to a three point game midway through the second, Beauregard connected on another three and Brown did the same to push the Seward lead to eight. Once again Allen showed some fight, dicing the Seward lead to four, but six straight by the guys in green gave them their biggest lead of the night at 59-49 with 10:16 to go. The Saints showed their inexperience late in the half though, allowing Allen to trim their lead to one and then tie it with 2:30 to go, but an off the ball foul and a technical foul on the Devils gave Seward four straight free throws and they cashed them all in to go up four 69-65. It was a two point game with under two minutes to go when Beauregard came up big again, getting an old fashioned three point play to make put Seward up five and Allen never threatened again. The Saints closed the game out at the free throw line, eventually getting an earful from the crowd with a 79-70 win.
With his mom in the stands for the first time this season, Beauregard shined, putting up a 21 point, 11 rebound double-double to lead the way for the Saints. All three Seward reserves scored in double figures led by Sims who put up 17 despite just five field goal attempts and Brown and Kidd who each had 10.
It was a much needed win for Seward who improves to 8-17 overall and 5-16 in Jayhawk Conference play where they vault up two spots in the standings to #12. It is a tough loss for Allen who falls to 12-13 overall and 9-12 in conference play, putting their chances for a home playoff date in serious doubt with five games remaining.
The Saints will look to make it a win streak on Wednesday when they hit the road to Neosho County to take on a Panthers team that they dropped a close one to in the Greenhouse earlier this season.