The Santa Fe men’s basketball team took down St. Petersburg for the second time this season following a dominant second-half performance.
It was a first half to forget for the Saints, as they seemed to lack cohesion on offense to start. They shot a poor 33.3% from the field in the first half while turning the ball over 10 times. The bright spot on offense was center Nikolaos Noumeros, who scored 14 of Santa Fe’s 26 first-half points. His presence on both sides of the floor kept Santa Fe in the game in the first half.
Santa Fe was also heavily out-rebounded by St. Petersburg. The Titans totaled 10 offensive rebounds compared to the Saints’ 4.
Despite the rough start on offense, the Saints couldn’t have asked for a better first-half performance defensively. They held the Titans to an abysmal 26.2% field goal percentage while giving up only 27 points.
After a forgettable first-half performance, the Saints came out after the break and looked like a completely different team. Offensively, the Saints shot much better, this time shooting a stellar 62.5% from the field and 55.6% from three. Santa Fe also cut down the turnovers to only 5 in the second half.
“I thought we really battled in the second half”, said head coach Chris Mowry. “In the last 15 minutes we turned it over only once, and all of a sudden we’re getting out, we’re knocking down shots, we’re getting layups, we’re finishing inside, and slowly we were able to pull away.”
Defensively, the Saints held the Titans to an abysmal 11.1% from beyond the arc in the second half. In addition to some stellar defense, the Saints were much more active on the boards and ended up out-rebounding the Titans 50-41 to finish the game. Santa Fe ended up outscoring St. Petersburg 51-30 in the second half.
Player of the Game: Nikolaos Noumeros
Forward Nikolaos Noumeros had himself a career night. The sophomore from the Czech Republic tallied a career-high 24 points while shooting 4/5 from deep. Noumeros also grabbed 14 rebounds including 4 offensive boards and also recorded 2 blocks and a steal. His presence on both ends of the court was felt in a massive way.
“He’s very skilled, he plays very hard, he has the ability to shoot the ball which makes him a tough matchup for bigger guys on the other team, and he always works hard on the boards.”- Head Coach Chris Mowry.
The Saints will travel to Polk State College on Saturday, February 4 for their second matchup against the Eagles.