DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The Rockford University men's basketball team (4-7) concluded its Florida trip on Thursday with an 85-62 setback to the University of Saint Joseph Blue Jays (7-4). Despite the loss, the Regents got a once in a lifetime experience of playing against Hall of Fame Coach and three-time NCAA National Champion, Jim Calhoun. Unfortunately, just like in Rockford's previous game against Dubuque, the Regents were hurt both at the free throw line and on the glass. Rockford made just six free throws compared to 21 made free throws for the Blue Jays. Saint Joseph also controlled the glass, holding a 46-26 advantage on the boards, which led to a 20-6 edge in second chance points.
- The Regents used a very balanced attack early on, with a different Regent scoring each of Rockford's first four baskets. Jeremiah Stewart (Chicago, Ill.) gave Rockford its first lead of the game at 5-4, following a made three-pointer at the 17:38 mark.
- Just over three minutes later, fellow senior Tony Diemer (Rockford, Ill.) connected on a layup to give the Regents their largest lead of the game at 11-6.
- The Blue Jays then went on a 9-0 run over the next two minutes to regain the lead at 15-11.
- The Saint Joseph lead hovered around five points until late in the first half, when the Blue Jays scored six straight points to take an 11-point advantage at 29-18.
- The two schools traded buckets over the remaining seven minutes of the first half, as Rockford trailed 41-30 at the break.
- Rockford opened the second half strong, scoring the first four points to cut the Blue Jay lead back down to seven. Jeremiah Stewart and Kevin Diemer (Rockford, Ill.) each found the bottom of the net during Rockford's 4-0 run.
- With Rockford still trailing by nine and just over 16 minutes remaining in the game, the Regents used another 4-0 run to pull within five at 46-41. Jeremiah Stewart and Brandon Emerick (Elkhart, Ind.) each tallied one basket during that span.
- However, the Blue Jays promptly responded with a 5-0 run of their own, to extend their lead back to double-digits.
- Unfortunately, Rockford was never able to get any closer than eight points for the remainder of the game and ultimately fell by a final score of 85-62.
- Tony Diemer poured in a team-high 17 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists.
- Brandon Emerick tallied 12 points, 4 assists, 3 rebounds and 1 steal.
- Jeremiah Stewart finished with 12 points on 5-of-9 shooting, 2 rebounds and 1 block.
The Rockford University men's basketball team returns to the court on Thursday, January 3 against Lakeland. Tip-off is set for 7 PM in the Seaver Center.