Bethel University held as much as a 14 point lead late in the first half, but the Pioneers of Crowley’s Ridge College continued to fight and claw their way back into the game before falling 89-82.
Bethel took a 43-29 lead with 1:07 to play before the half after the Wildcats finished a 8-2 run. CRC came back with a 5-0 run of their own in the final minute to cut the Bethel lead to 43-34 before the half.
CRC came out hot in the second half and cut the Bethel lead to two points after a made basket by Ke Roberson with 16:49 to play in the game made the score 47-45. The Wildcats answered and pushed the lead back to 64-55 with 11:42 left in the game.
Ke Roberson made two free throws with 9:23 to play to tie the game at 64 each, and Logan Willett followed it up with a three pointer to put the Pioneers on top. Bethel took the lead back and extended their lead to six points with 3:22 to play.
KJ Corder made a basket with 1:04 to play to cut the Bethel lead to three points at 82-79, but CRC could not get any closer on the afternoon.
Corder led all scorers on the day with 24 points. Logan Willett added 20 points including four of nine shooting from the three point line. Kyle Moore scored 10 points in the loss.
The difference in the game was in the rebounds. Bethel out rebounded CRC 44-33, including 14-8 on the offensive rebounds. The Wildcats outscored the Pioneers 21-9 on second chance points in the game.