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LATE SURGE PROPELS BISON OVER WAYNESBURG
Jan. 28 - WAYNESBURG, Pa. – A 12-2 game-ending run gave the Bethany men’s basketball team (11-8, 5-3) a 77-67 victory at Waynesburg (6-12, 2-6) Wednesday, the Bison’s first road win of the season.
BC’s shooting was as cold as the weather to start the game. The Yellow Jackets’ Dan Happe scored seven points during a 15-0 blitz to start the game. Bethany didn’t get their first point until freshman Lance Beckwith (Raleigh, N.C./Word of God Christian Academy) hit a free throw with 14:11 on the clock and their first field goal didn’t come until freshman Tobi Akinsola (Cary, N.C./Word of God Christian Academy) drained a short jumper at the 13:37 mark.
The rest of the half belonged to the Bison, who outscored the hosts 37-14 after the opening run. The key stretch came when sophomore Ryan McFadden (Columbus, Ohio/Mount Vernon Academy), senior Tyler Morando (Wheeling, W.Va./Wheeling Central) and senior forward Petre Petkovski (Wheeling, W.Va./Wheeling Park) buried consecutive threes to spark a 13-0 spurt that turned an 11-point deficit into a two-point BC lead, which would grow into a 37-29 margin at the break.
Petkovski hit two foul shots to open the second half to extend the lead to 10, but Waynesburg bounced right back. Three-point plays by Jarrell Rodriguez and Ryan Courneen ignited a 13-2 Yellow Jacket surge, which gave them the lead back at 42-41. From that point on, the game saw seven ties and five lead changes to lead into the final three minutes.
Rodriguez scored on a lay-up to even the game at 65-65, but a couple minutes later, junior Joe Testa (Amity, Pa./Trinity) scored in the low post for the final go-ahead basket at the 2:12 mark. Sophomore Dakota Matz (Zanesville, Ohio) knocked down a jumper on BC’s next possession, but it was answered by another hoop from Rodriguez. The Bison finally got some breathing room when Morando canned a trey with 1:08 remaining for a five-point bulge at 72-67. From there, Beckwith would take care of business at the foul line, hitting 5-of-6 in the last 43 seconds to clinch Bethany’s 14th consecutive win over Waynesburg.
Bethany’s first road win in eight attempts this season was led by Petkovski, who tallied 21 points and 13 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the season. Beckwith posted solid all-around numbers with 16 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three steals, while Morando chipped in 13.
For Waynesburg, Happe notched 20 points and Jason Clark totaled 14.
The Bison return to the hardwood Saturday afternoon with a home contest against Geneva, which is slated to begin at 4 p.m.