Althoff and East St. Louis basketball battle at Highland Shootout
East St. Louis gained revenge for a previous loss to the Althoff Crusaders on Saturday, overcoming a 15-point deficit in the first half to post a 74-67 victory in the finale of the Highland Shootout.
East St. Louis (10-6) got 21 points from Arthur Carter along with 13 points and eight blocked shots from 6-foot-10 University of Illinois recruit Jeremiah Tilmon before a standing-room-only crowd of 3,200. Carter scored 14 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter.
Althoff (9-4) finished the game without star senior and Saint Louis University recruit Jordan Goodwin, who left the game with a dislocated left shoulder with 2:04 remaining in the first half. Goodwin suffered the injury while fighting for a rebound with Tilmon.
He left the game and went to the locker room with a trainer, not returning before the first half ended. Goodwin scored 13 points in the first half to help stake the Crusaders to a 37-26 lead. Goodwin returned to the bench early in the second half, wearing street clothes and with an ice pack on his left shoulder after having it put back into place.
He is expected to be re-evaluated Monday.
After Althoff’s C.J. Coldon tied it 67-67, East St. Louis sophomore Terrence Hargrove Jr. drained a 3-pointer from just above the top of the key with one minute remaining to put the Flyers back on top.
“My coach told me if it’s there, step in and make the shot,” said Hargrove, who left the game briefly in the fourth quarter after being hit in the throat during a collision. “So I stepped up and took the shot and made the big play. I had all the confidence from there on.”
After Hargrove’s 3-pointer, Tilmon swatted away a shot by Coldon with the Crusaders hoping to tie the game. Then Carter drained two free throws with 18.2 seconds remaining to put things out of reach.
“Resilient,” was the word used by East St. Louis coach Phillip Gilbert when describing the emotional comeback. “Big-time players make big-time shots and big-time plays. T.J. (Hargrove) made the shot, but look at Vickers coming in. Travion Vickers had ice in his veins. We work every day on him shooting the ball and stepping up, and he did it tonight when it mattered.”
The Flyers got a huge fourth quarter out of Vickers, who came off the bench to score 10 points in the final eight minutes.
The Crusaders’ top scorer was senior guard Marvin Bateman, who led everyone with 26 points. Coldon added 12 points for Althoff, and Goodwin had 13 before his injury.
“I’ve been dealing with this problem since this summer, the shoulder popping in and out of place,” said Goodwin, who also played football for Althoff’s Class 4A quarterfinal team. “It’s just a minor setback. They said I could have played out there, but this time when it popped out it took a longer time to come back in. My arm’s still hurting, it’s swollen. I can barely move it.
“I’m still proud of my team. They left it all on the court; they played their hardest. I know we took the ‘L,’ but it’s still a ‘W’ to see how these guys had my back.”
Althoff beat East St. Louis 83-80 in overtime on Dec. 29 in the semifinals of the Collinsville-Prairie Farms Holiday Classic. Goodwin exploded for 31 points and 11 rebounds in that game, while Tilmon scored 26 points and Carter added 20.
Bateman had 12 points in the first half while the Flyers, bothered by the Crusaders’ 2-3 zone defense, got six points each in the first half from Kerion Chairs and Carter.
The Flyers committed 11 turnovers in the first half, while the Crusaders struggled with their shooting. Althoff hit just 14 of 37 shots in the first half.
Althoff took a 49-41 lead into the fourth quarter, though Tilmon became much more of a factor with Goodwin out of the game. He scored six points in the third quarter to keep things close and kept a close watch on anything near the basket the rest of the night, continually blocking shots or changing their trajectory.
Gilbert and the Flyers showed compassion for Goodwin’s injury situation.
“You hate to see that,” Gilbert said. “That’s a great kid. It’s just unfortunate that he was out. I love to see kids battle against each other, especially the kids that know each other and have been around each other for a long time. It’s unfortunate that had to happen. We just stepped up and made plays when it counted.
“I tip my hat to Althoff because they came down and played basketball, even though Goodwin was out for that second half.”
The Flyers trailed 33-18 and 35-20 in the second quarter and were still down by 13 early in the second half. Althoff still led 57-47 following a 3-point play by Edwyn Brown with about five minutes remaining, but the Flyers outscored Althoff 27-10 the rest of the way.
Carter helped spur the fourth-quarter run by East Side with 14 points, while Vickers nailed two 3-pointers and contributed 10 points.
Goodwin is unsure when he will return. Althoff’s next game is against Centralia on Tuesday.
“I’m going to talk to my team and see what’s best for them,” he said. “I’ll talk to my mom and dad and see if they want me to play. I’ll either come back right away or take a few games off.”