Holy Cross, despite a career-high 15 points from Jehyve Floyd, dropped a 58-54 decision to La Salle on Saturday in the inaugural Basketball Hall of Fame Belfast Classic.
Down 34-24 at halftime, Holy Cross faced a 42-26 deficit with 14:57 remaining.
However, an 18-12 run – capped by a Patrick Benzan layup with 7:38 left – go the Crusaders back into it, 46-42.
With 2:25 remaining, Floyd connected on a jumper to knot the score at 50-50, and Holy Cross its first tie since it was 0-0.
With 1:18 to go, Karl Charles countered a Explorers 3-pointer, with a pair of free throws, making it a 53-52 game.
However, on the ensuing La Salle possession, Isiah Deas would drill a triple, pushing its lead to 56-52.
Holy Cross would go scoreless the next 55 seconds, before Benzan ended the spell with a layup, pulling it within two, 56-54, with three ticks to go, but B.J. Johnson sealed the Explorers’ win with a pair of free throws.
Benzan chipped in 13 points in the Crusaders’ loss.
Holy Cross returns to play on Wednesday at 7 p.m. with a road game against UMass (3-5).