Jesuit takes control of Metro race
By Allan Classen
Jesuit’s Justin Bieker may have been the best player in the gym Feb. 8 in the Crusader’s showdown game against Sunset, but the 6-5 do-everything guard has to thank his teammates from bailing him out of an embarrassing meltdown.
Bieker blocked a shot in the last two minutes of the game, protecting a 57-51 lead. But he drew a technical foul for taunting the shooter, giving Sunset two free throws and a possession that resulted in a three-point basket.
Before the Crusaders could get their hands on the ball again, their lead had melted to two. Sunset would have two possessions more to at least tie the game. Each time, the Crusaders defense turned up, causing forced shots and a turnover.
Bieker had a chance to pad the lead in the final minute but missed a one-and-one. That gave Sunset its last chance to knot it up, which appeared to occur as Cody King powered in a put-back shot. It was nullified by a traveling violation, however.
Otherwise, Bieker was superb, finishing on drives and draining jump shots from around the foul line with ease. He had five rebounds and four assists. He is scoring 17.8 points per game this season.
Braeden Sato, a 5-10 point guard averaging 16 points a game, scored 14 for Sunset. But only three came in the second half and Jesuit’s defense gave him no open shots in the closing minutes.
The teams entered the contest tied for first in the Metro League with 7-1 records. Jesuit now leads by one game with three league games to go.Allan Classen is editor and publisher of the NW Examiner