Jan. 9 - BETHANY, W.Va. – Sole possession of second place in the PAC will be on the line Saturday when the Bethany men’s basketball team hosts Grove City in a 4 p.m. tip-off at Hummel Field House.
The Bison (7-6, 2-1) came up short in their bid for a third straight win Wednesday with a 75-59 loss at Saint Vincent. The contest was tied at 54 with 6:24 to play, but SVC scored 13 consecutive points to take control and finished the game with a 21-5 run. Senior Petre Petkovski (Wheeling, W.Va./Wheeling Park) had team-highs of 17 points and eight rebounds for BC, who was out-rebounded 46-33. That total included 21 offensive boards by the Bearcats, the most given up by a Bethany team since Nov., 2005, when Marietta grabbed 27.
The loss also dropped Bethany to 0-6 on the road this year, but BC has been very good once again at Hummel Field House. The Bison are 5-0 at home this season and since 2000, the Green and White have posted an 80-18 record on their floor for a .816 winning percentage.
Trips to West Virginia have not been particularly kind to Grove City. They have dropped six in a row at Bethany and are just 1-9 in their last 10 contests at Hummel. Last year’s contest was a 78-61 BC victory behind 14 points and 13 rebounds from junior Joe Testa (Amity, Pa./Trinity). The Bison have enjoyed considerable success overall against the Wolverines recently, claiming 11 of the last 12 match-ups, although GCC still leads the all-time series 44-32.
This has been a long week of road trips for Grove City (7-4, 2-1). On Monday, they won 81-72 at Juniata and then traveled to Thomas More Wednesday for an early-season showdown for first place. The Saints raced to a 39-26 halftime lead and used a 21-0 run midway through the second half to essentially clinch the 80-48 victory. A pair of freshman guards led GCC in scoring, as Mike Conglose and Cody Fleeger had eight points apiece.
The Wolverines feature their usual stifling defense, as they lead the PAC in field goal percentage defense (38.3) and are second in points allowed (65.7). Offensively, Grove City is seventh in the league with 67.8 points per game. A trio of Wolverines are scoring in double digits, led by Ryan Gibson with 12.5, Andy O’Keefe with 12.4 and Joe McCoy with 10.5. McCoy (88.6 percent) leads the GCC efforts at the foul line, where they are ranked first in the conference in free throw accuracy (74.2).