SALT LAKE CITY — Jimmer Fredette’s run in a national basketball tournament has come to an end.
The former BYU star scored 24 points, including four fourth-quarter 3-pointers, but Team Fredette fell 80-76 to Eberlein Drive in the semifinals of The Basketball Tournament at Morgan State University in Baltimore.
Eberlein Drive advanced to face Overseas Elite in Friday’s championship game of the $2 million, winner-take-all summer basketball tournament of former collegiate stars. Kyle Fogg scored 10 points during a 26-4 run to end the game that lifted the three-time defending champs by the Marquette alumni Golden Eagles, 85-60.
"We knew what we needed to do," said Donald Sloan, who led Eberlein Drive with 20 points, in an ESPN interview. "We just needed to come out and play hard, stay focused and stay locked in.
"But that last couple of possessions was hard."
Former Provo High and BYU standout Brandon Davies had 10 points in the first quarter to keep Team Fredette close, but Eberlein Drive used a 21-11 second-quarter spurt to take a 41-32 halftime lead.
Team Fredette refused to go away, capping an 11-0 run with ex-Idaho star Jeff Ledbetter’s 3-pointer to pull within four, 53-49, with 3:05 left in the third quarter.
Ledbetter splashed a 3-pointer from Fredette, and the former Naismith Player of the Year from BYU capped a 13-0 run on the next offensive series with a reverse layup that pulled Team Fredette within two, 53-51, with just under three minutes left in the third quarter.
But Eberlein Drive ended the quarter on a 12-3 run to take a 65-54 lead into the final period.
Fredette opened the final period with a pair of threes and assisted to Ledbetter on the first break to pull his namesake squad back into contention. The sharpshooter who plays for the Shanghai Sharks in China then dropped a 40-foot 3-pointer to cut the deficit to one, 65-64, with 6:19 left in the game.
Team Fredette tied the game just a few minutes before the Elam Ending. But Eberlein Drive took a 73-69 advantage into Elam, setting a target score of 80 that James Michael McAdoo clinched on a dunk.
"We just stayed poised," Sloan said. "We kind of got out of control a bit. But we’ve got guys out there who have been doing this for a long time."
Once identified by Sports Illustrated as TBT’s worst team, Eberlein Drive revamped its roster for 2018 with a handful of former NBA players, including ex-Jazzman and Slam Dunk champion Jeremy Evans, to make its semifinal run as a No. 7 seed.