The Golden Knights didn't hear much from Conner, but they saw
enough of Purdom, who hit a 10-foot runner as time expired to give
Loma Linda a 63-61 victory.
Loma Linda 22 22 9 10 -- 63
St. Francis 19 14 13 15 -- 61
Purdom 27, 9 rebounds and 4 assists, De Leon 8 and 7 rebounds, Boone 6 and 7 rebounds, Aprecio 6 and 6 assists, Ja. Wilson 6, Love 6, Pope 2. Conner * Three-pointers: Purdom.
Johnson 21, Burton 19 and 5 assists, Pochow 8, Fleming 5, Peterson 4, Grimes 2 and 7 steals, Dietrich 2. * Three-pointers: Burton 3, Polchow 2, Johnson 2.
Purdom's buzzer-beater spoiled a hard-fought comeback by the
Golden Knights (3-2), who trailed by as many as 14 points in the first half but were able to tie it with 30 seconds left on a
three-pointer by Chris Johnson.
"It was a good comeback by the kids, but that first half was just
too much for us to overcome," Jordan said.
Loma Linda (4-2) scored 22 points in each of the first and second
quarters to lead by 11 going into halftime. Leading the way for the
Roadrunners' fast-paced offense was Purdom, who scored 20 points in
the first half.
But the standout guard had just seven in the second half, as St.
Francis tightened up on defense, allowing just 19 points in the second half.
However, when it mattered most, the Golden Knights -- who forced
28 turnovers, 17 in the second half -- couldn't stop Purdom from
getting an open look with the game on the line.
"He's a very good player," said Jordan of Purdom, who also
finished with nine rebounds and five assists. "We're going to see
some very good guards [competing in the Mission League], but I think
he's as good as anyone we'll see.
"And he's not the only good guard they have. Their shooting guard
[Conner] has a beautiful stroke, but we didn't allow him to get it
Conner had just two points, thanks to the defense of Johnson, who
chased down the athletic guard the entire night.
Johnson also got it done on the offensive end, leading St. Francis
with 21 points.
But like teammate Scott Burton, who finished with 19 points,
Johnson struggled with his shot, making just eight of 21 from the
field. Burton was six of 24.
Defensively, St. Francis -- which was led by Dean Grimes' seven
steals -- held Loma Linda's Michael Boone, the aforementioned
7-footer, to just six points and seven rebounds.