The Eagle men took five minutes to get going in their game with Barclay last night. Unfortunately, Barclay took advantage of those five minutes, grabbing a 15-0 lead in what would prove to be enough to defeat the Eagles in their inaugural game at the 31st annual ACCA National Tournament. Faith matched Barclay over the next 35 minutes, but could never get closer than nine points. Faith fell by a 66-85 final score, and is now 11-18 on the year.
Barclay was fueled by an 0/5 start from the floor, along with two turnovers in that first five minute 15-0 run. After the Eagles settled down, they were able to pull back within nine at the 12:30 mark, but Barclay responded with back to back threes off of a Faith turnover and missed field goal to squelch any hope of a first half comeback. Faith trailed by 19 at the break. Faith played a much better second half, as they opened with a 16-7 run to pull within ten. However, in a mirror of the first half, two Faith turnovers led to a layup and three point shot by Barclay, quickly pushing the lead back to 15 and again keeping the Eagles comeback hopes at bay. Offensively, the Eagles did well in the second half, matching Barclay's point total of 36 for the half, but the 19 point deficit was just too much to overcome for the Eagles as they could not string together enough defensive stops.
The Eagles came in as the #11 seed, and will now head to the consolation bracket with a 12:30 PM contest on Friday, March 1 with Association Free Lutheran Bible School (AFLBS). The game features a familiar opponent, as Faith and AFLBS met twice during the regular season, with Faith fortunate to win two very close contests. A win will put the Eagles into the 9th place game on Saturday at 10:45 AM, a loss sends them to the 11th place game at 9 AM on Saturday. Both games will be broadcast live.