Sturgis’ boys basketball team experienced a hard-to-swallow defeat Friday at Battle Creek Lakeview, losing to the Spartans 50-49 in the closing seconds.
Ryan Schuller, who along with Jack Scheske led Sturgis with 15 points, grabbed an offensive rebound for the putback to tied the game at 49-49 with around a minute to play.
Lakeview held for the last shot and Jack Bivens, who scored a game-high17 points, drew a foul with 3.8 seconds left on the clock. He made the first free throw but couldn’t get the second to drop.
Chance Stewart secured the defensive rebound and kicked it out to brother Tristen Stewart, who launched a shot from midcourt that hit the backboard and rimmed out.
“I think we played well and really competitive but we fouled the 3-point shooter too many times,” Scheske said. “They were able to capitalize on that.”
Lakeview moves to 4-3 overall and 3-3 in the Southwestern Michigan Athletic Conference, while the Trojans slipped to 5-4 and 2-4 in the league.
Sturgis held a 26-25 lead at halftime, but Lakeview outscored the Trojans 18-12 in the third quarter. The Spartans shot 15-for-39 from the field and 4-for-16 from deep. Sturgis was 21-for-35 from the floor and just 1-for-5 from 3-point land. The Trojans were also outscored 16-6 at the foul line.
Chance Stewart finished with another double-double (14 points and 11 rebounds) before leaving Battle Creek for Kalamazoo, where he was to make his official visit to Western Michigan University. Stewart has been committed to play quarterback for the Broncos for some time.
Though the Trojans will have to move on without him next season, head coach Keith Kurowski should be in good shape with the way Schuller, a 6-foot-9 sophomore has progressed quickly this year.
“Chance and the other guards have been giving me good touches in practice and in games,” said Schuller, who had five rebounds. “Coach has been working with me on my shot selection.”
Andrew Airgood scored five points and Tristen Stewart added four assists for Sturgis.