BILLINGS, Mont. – Jarvis Lee scored 21 points and Latez Williams posted a double-double to lead the St. Mary’s offense, while the defense shut down Montana State University-Billings in the second half, helping the Rattlers to a 67-51 win in Heartland Conference men’s basketball action Wednesday night at Alterowitz Gymnasium.
Lee (Sr., Houston) hit in on 6-of-12 shots from the field and 4-of-9 from three-point range to top the 20-point mark for the third time in the last five games. Williams (Jr., Hamilton, Ohio) scored 13 points on a perfect 4-of-4 from the field, and pulled down a season-high 13 points for his second double-double of the season.
The Yellowjackets took a one-point edge into the locker room at the halftime break, but it didn’t take long for St. Mary’s to take control of the game in the second half. A three-pointer by Jeff Miner gave MSUB a three-point lead at 38-35 with 14:26 to play. Rod Bellard (So., Beaumont) tied things with a three-pointer on the next possession. That basket keyed an 8-0 run that gave the Rattlers a 46-38 lead with 10:20 to play. A pair of Yellowjacket baskets cut the St. Mary’s lead to four at 46-42 with 9:34 left. Two three-pointers by Lee over the next two minutes put the Rattlers up by 12 points and they were never headed from there.
As a team the Rattlers shot 46.9 percent (23-49) from the field in the game, and 54.5 percent (12-22) in the second half. They held MSUB to 34.5 percent (20-58) for the game and 24.1 percent (7-29) in the second half. St. Mary’s outrebounded the Yellowjackets 46-25 in the game. No Billings player reached double figures in scoring in the game.
St. Mary’s improved to 10-8 overall and 3-2 in Heartland play with the win. MSUB fell to 3-14 and 3-3. The Rattlers will return to action on Saturday when they travel to Jefferson City, Mo., to take Lincoln University in a Heartland Conference matchup starting at 3:30 p.m.