Hamline's men's basketball team used a four-pronged offensive attack to grab a a second half lead and pull away from St. Thomas, 69-61, Saturday at Hutton Arena. Isaac Brooks, one of two Pipers who scored 19 points, had 14 of his in the second session. Zach Smith, the other 19-point scorer, added 13 as HU improved to 3-2 overall, 1-1 in the MIAC.
Jay Betts had several spectacular baskets on his way to 13 points and also snared a career high seven steals and Dylan See-Rockers contributed 10 to help the Pipers defeat their neighbors for the second time in their last three meetings.
The pace was fast and furious from start to finish. There were four tie scores in the first eight minutes that saw the teams tied at 16. HU went ahead by four only to see UST go on a 12-2 run for a 31-27 lead. As a sign of things to come, Smith and Brooks came back with baskets and the teams went to the locker room tied at 31.
Smith broke a 35-all tie with a layup five minutes into the second half and the Pipers never trailed again. After giving up seven first half three-pointers, HU clamped down on the Tommies and held them to three in the second half. The Piper offense connected when needed, eventually building a nine-point lead at 62-53 with 3:27 left. The Tommies rallied, getting within a pair at 63-61 with 1:37 left. Smith then hit a layup and, after Ethan Scheuring blocked a shot, Smith was fouled and converted his shots. See-Rockers, who led the Pipers with seven rebounds, did likewise to seal the decision.
Ryan Lindberg led UST with 15 points on five first half three-pointers.
Hamline is back at Hutton Arena Wednesday, December 6 against St. Olaf. Game time is 7:00 p.m.