ARDEN HILLS, Minn. (Blugolds.com) - The UW-Eau Claire men's basketball team was able to fend off a frantic rally from the Marian Sabers to hold on and win 81-79 in the second and final day of the Bethel University Tournament. The Blugolds are now 3-1 on the season.
Eau Claire built a 66-51 advantage midway through the second half after entering the halftime locker room up with a 43-35 lead.
But the Sabers kept battling and even had a shot to win the game at the end. After two missed free throws by the Blugolds, Marian grabbed a rebound and called a timeout down two with five seconds to go, but was unable to muster up any points in the final possession as Eau Claire escaped with a win.
The Blugolds bounced back from last night's cold shooting to torch the nets Saturday. They went 11-for-20 from beyond the 3-point line and made 24 free throws.
Adam Hjelter (So.-Hutchinson, Minn.) led the offensive attack with 20 points, including 5-for-8 from three.
Lewis Mau (Jr.-Colfax, Wis.) recorded the Blugolds' second double-double of the season, scoring 16 points and snagging 13 rebounds.
Kurtis Moody (Pequot Lakes, Minn.) scored 18 points by going 8-of-12 from the free throw line. He also had eight rebounds a night after his double-double effort.
Eric Effertz (Jr.-Ladysmith,Wis.) also scored in double figures by pouring in 12.
The Blugolds will return home to Zorn Arena Tuesday night to play their first home game of the season against Loras College (Iowa). Tip off is set for 7 p.m.