It was supposed to be a record-setting night for Kyle Steigenga. The 3-time NAIA All-American is on the verge of becoming the all-time leading scorer in Cornerstone Golden Eagles history.
Tonight, though, the spotlight shined on his teammate, Sam Vander Sluis. The junior center scored his 1,000th career point at Cornerstone (20-3) and finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds to lead the team’s 82-52 victory over Lourdes University in Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference play.
In a game that got a bit physical, the Golden Eagles took flight early, jumping out to a 27-7 lead on the visitors. Leading 41-16 at halftime, Steigenga had just 6 points, still 14 away form tying the record of 1,231 points set by Jim Eppink. Vander Sluis and Michael Bradshaw each had 11 at the break. Freshman point guard Christian Rodriguez was on his way to a triple-double with 6 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists in the first half.
Not much changed after the break. CU slowing stretched the lead as the starters gave way to the bench players. The youthful bunch of kids in position to take over as the seniors leave keep the Golden Eagles massive lead intact. Although it wasn’t very pretty, it was obvious the future is in good hands with the likes of Rodriguez, Gabe Meriweather, Nick Dekkenga and others.
Steigenga finished with 13 points and 4 rebounds. He now has career totals of 2,259 points and 1,113 rebounds, just 13 points and 110 rebounds form tying each record.
Cornerstone welcomes Madonna University to Mol Arena on Saturday at 3 p.m.