Saints top No. 19 Arizona Christian - News, Sports and Weather

Saints top No. 19 Arizona Christian

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The Carroll College men's basketball team won nine games in 28 games last season, head coach Carson Cunningham's first. In his second season, the Saints surpassed that mark in style Thursday night with an 83-76 win over No. 19 Arizona Christian in a neutral site game in Chandler, Ariz..

“We were hoping for a shocker in the desert,” Cunningham said. “Thankfully, our guys really battled, chirped, and helped each other, and we were able to win a hard-fought tilt against a ranked team.”

Zach Taylor led the way for the Saints with 27 points and five assists. Oliver Carr score 16 for the Saints and Ryan Imhoff scored 15 points, his first double-digit game since an illness kept him out of several games earlier this season.

Jake Hollifield tallied a team-high 10 rebounds.

Arizona Christian jumped out to an early 13-6 before the Saint chipped away to take a 21-18 lead on a Hollifield layup with 6:47 left in the first half.

ACU ended the half on a 13-7 run to take a 31-28 lead into the break.

The Firestorm picked up the second half where they left off and built a 44-32 lead, the largest of the game, with 15:39 remaining in the second half.

“Arizona Christian is very good and managed to build a 12-point lead in the 2nd half,” Cunningham said. “But the Saints continued to fight and win, and it was inspiring to watch.”

The Saints chipped away at the ACU lead to tie the game at 59 with 8:06 left in the game. After trading leads the game was again tied at 65 with 5:02 left before Carroll took control.

The Saints went on a 17-5 run over the next 4:21.

ACU was able to cut the lead to seven in the final second but it was too little and the Saints prevailed 83-76.

Carroll is now 10-2 on the season and Arizona Christian falls to 6-3. The Saints play Thompson Rivers (British Columbia) tomorrow at 3:30 in the second neutral site game of the weekend. The game takes place on the campus of Chandler-Gilbert Community College in Chandler.

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