Belleville East’s big third quarter sinks Tigers

Unstoppable. That is the only way to describe Belleville East in the third quarter of today’s (Dec. 27) game against OHS, in which Belleville East won 65-55.

Outscoring the Tigers 23-6 and undoubtably getting the better end of some very questionable officiating, the powerhouse Lancers were able to overcome a halftime deficit of seven points and stretch out to a 10 point lead over the Tigers.

It was a tale of two halfs for the Tigers.

The first half was very similar to yesterday’s game against Springfield Southeast. The Tigers came out strong once again running out to a quick 14-8 lead. After being up by 15 with just over three minutes left, a late surge by the Lancers brought the score to 30-23 at halftime.

Just seven seconds into the third quarter Austin Gillmann (12) picked up his third personal foul (a phantom foul in many minds) forcing him to sit most of the quarter for the second day in a row. From that point on it was a downward tumble for OHS. Half way through the quarter, head coach Nick Traxler was called for a technical. East made both free throws and scored on the ensuing possession pretty much sealing the Tigers fate.

The fourth quarter the Tigers tried to make a come back but never could get close. Ervin Sarajlic (12) had another big day scoring 25 points. Gillmann played well despite only playing about half the game due to the dubious foul trouble he was in finishing with 14 points and 12 rebounds.

With the loss the Tigers will have a rematch with McCluer North, who the Tigers played just over a week ago losing 60-46. The game tips tomorrow (Dec. 28) at 9am in Collinsville. With a win the Tigers would play for 5th place some time later in the day.