SLU Falls 65-61 To End Great Season

Saint Louis lost 65-61 to Michigan State on Sunday evening to end its season in the Round of 32 of the NCAA Tournament. After a valiant comeback, the Bills simply could not overcome several big shots from the Spartans.

In a hard-fought game, the Saint Louis Billikens came up just four points short.

This season was one of the most successful in Saint Louis history, but against a No. 1 seed, the Bills needed to play a near-perfect game. A pedestrian 35 percent from the field doomed the upset bid."

"They made the right plays at the right time every time," junior forward Cory Remekun said.

In one quick sentence, Remekun summed up the game. Michigan State All-American Draymond Green and guard Keith Appling nailed timely shots again and again.

A late comeback showed signs of improvement for next year.

"It's a good sign," Remekun said. "It shows that we're never going to quit."

Redshirt junior Kwamain Mitchell discussed the late runs and in head coach Rick Majerus' wording: "sticktoitiveness".

"The game of basketball is all about runs," Mitchell said. "The one thing that Coach was proud about when they had that run we didn't give up. We were out there fighting and scrapping, and Coach told us coing into this game it's not going to be easy."

Tonight marked the end of two careers at SLU. Seniors Brian Conklin and Kyle Cassity may have played very different roles in the game tonight, but their path was etched together.

"Coach has done so much," a very emotional Conklin said postgame. "Being his first recruiting class, he told me that we were going to be special here. And it felt like this year it really came together, and Kyle and I, Kwamain, we were able to take what Coach taught us. He's a great coach. I couldn't imagine playing for a better coach, a better person."

Beyond the tears and hurt, Conklin knows the future is bright for the program.

"We really put Saint Louis on the map," Conklin said. "It's fun to know that Saint Louis is on the rise again. They have a great nucleus coming back. I would just tell them that this one is going to hurt all offseason. . .just think of a four-point loss to Michigan State. That could be you guys next year because of the talent we have coming back."

Four years in the making, the Billikens came to Columbus, competed hard, but ultimately fell a few baskets short.


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