La Mirada, CA- For the first time going back as far as the 1995-96 season, and what may realistically be ever, Hope International completed their first season sweep of Biola on Tuesday night. The 60-47 win for the Royals was also the first time since the 2007-08 season that the Royals combined with Women's Basketball to complete an evening sweep of Biola. Junior Jeremy Kilgore converted a game high 18 points. Senior Orlando Collins added 15 points on 7-10 shooting.
To begin the evening, Collins was the go to guy as he accounted for six of the first ten HIU points which included a fast break layup and dunk. Five minutes into the game, the Royals (22-5, 7-4 GSAC) had built a 10-2 edge.
Over the course of the next 11 minutes, HIU maintained the lead until the Eagles (14-13, 4-7 GSAC) tied the game at 21-21 and took the lead at 22-21 on a free throw.
Sophomore Austin Sanford gave HIU back the lead and forced another tie with layups in the paint on two consecutive HIU trips down the floor.
But Biola closed out the half with 6-2 run to take a four point advantage (31-27) to the locker room.
At the break, Collins led all scorers with 10 points. Jeremy Pope topped Biola with nine points in the opening half. Pope would not score a point in the second half.
Biola knocked down 50% of their shots from the field and three point arc while going a perfect 5-5 from the free throw line in the first half.
But the Hope International coaching staff made the needed adjustments in locker room and the Royals entirely turned the tables on the Eagles defensively in the second half.
Even after making 42.9% of their shots in the first half, HIU turned it up a notch offensively as well.
Two pointers from Kilgore, Collins, and Senior Kris Rosales tied the score at 33-33.
Down one (36-35), Kilgore drained a three pointer to push the Royals ahead 38-36. The Royals would not trail the rest of the game. In fact, they closed out the game with a 25-11 advantage started by the Kilgore three pointer for the lead.
Up just three, Kilgore went on a three point solo mission as he buried a three pointer on three of the next four HIU offensive possessions.
As the game rolled under five minutes to play, Collins knocked down a jumper on an assist from Rosales (one of his eight assists in the contest). The Collins jumper gave HIU a double digit cushion for the remainder of the night.
Two fast break dunks- one from Senior Travis Damuth and another from Sanford- iced the game for the Royals.
For comparison, offensively in the second half, the Royals shot 64% (14-22) from the field and 67% (4-7) from behind the three point line. On the defensive side of the court, the Royals allowed the Eagles to shoot just 22% (including 0% from the three point line) in the second half.
With the Royals fighting to secure one of the top two or three GSAC playoff spots, they will face the challenging task of going to Vanguard on Saturday. Tip-off is set for 7:30 pm. The Biola Eagles will host the other Eagles- Concordia- on Saturday.