QU men allow McKendree to go on back-breaking second-half run, suffer fourth straight loss


Quincy University's Orlando Thomas, left, looks to make a pass during Thursday night's game against McKendree in Lebanon, Ill. | Photo courtesy Max Bennett, McKendree athletics

LEBANON, Ill. — Which statistic best sums up why the Quincy University men’s basketball team suffered a 77-68 loss to McKendree on Thursday night?

Could it be the 21.4 percent shooting from 3-point range?

Or maybe it was allowing the Bearcats to make 11 treys and shoot 50 percent from beyond the arc?

The fact the Hawks had just three assists and committed 15 turnovers had to hurt, right?

Could allowing the Bearcats to make five consecutive field goals during a 12-0 run in the middle of the second half have been the backbreaker?

Add it all up and Quincy suffered another Great Lakes Valley Conference loss that dropped it to second-to-last in both the league standings and the point rating system used to determine the eight teams which qualify for the conference tournament.

With six games remaining in the regular season — all against teams currently in the top seven in the league standings — there is a mathematical chance the Hawks (10-12, 5-9 GLVC) could fight their way into the postseason, but it’s a longshot for a team that is now 2-6 on the road and has lost four straight games.

This one hurts because the opportunity to change Quincy’s fortunes existed.

The Hawks took a 48-45 lead after Orlando Thomas made a pair of free throws and Nate Shockey scored at the rim off a turnover with 10:25 remaining in the second half. An offensive rebound and a putback by the Bearcats’ Carson Parker a minute later kickstarted the pivotal 12-0 run.

Quincy missed five shots — three were 3-point attempts — and committed two turnovers in that stretch.

The Hawks shot 45.6 percent from the field and went 13 of 14 from the free-throw line, but were undone once again by perimeter shooting. The 21.4 percent shooting from 3-point range marked the sixth time this season Quincy has shot less than 30 percent from the outside.

Worse, the three assists were a season low and marked the ninth time with nine or fewer assists. Quincy has eight or fewer assists in three of its last four games.

Zion Richardson led the Hawks with 26 points, going 9 of 17 from the field and 7 of 8 from the free-throw line. Isiah Foster added 14 points. Milos Vicentic scored 19 points to lead five McKendree players in double figures.

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