Feb. 25 – BETHANY, W. Va. – The Bethany men’s basketball team (21-5) saw their run at a Presidents' Athletic Conference title come to end, as the Bison fell 61-59 to Geneva College on Tuesday evening.
The Bison jumped out to their largest lead of the contest when Lawrence Weldon connected on a driving layup to put Bethany up five (12-7) with 15:06 to play in the first half.
Geneva would counter with an 8-2 run, getting two three-point baskets from Jordan Harbison to move ahead, 15-14, with 12:59 to play in the opening stanza. The Golden Tornadoes would extend their lead to as many as seven in the first half and the Bison would find themselves down five (36-31) at the break.
In the second half, Geneva would slowly build their lead, pushing the advantage to as many as 12 points (52-40) on a three pointer by Jordan Lawrence with 11:59 to go in the game. The Bison, however, would have an answer.
Over the next seven minutes, Bethany would embark on a 16-3 run. All five starters would score in the run, including five points from Delonte’ Joyce (Annapolis, Md./Annapolis) and four from Lawrence Weldon (Baltimore, Md./Poly). A pair of Weldon free throws would give Bethany a one-point lead (56-55) with 4:42 remaining in the game.
With the Bison up two (57-55), Harbison immediately responded, hitting his sixth triple of the game to give the Golden Tornadoes the one-point advantage (58-57) with 3:14 to go.
Just 20 seconds later, the Bison were able to reclaim the lead (59-58) on two big free throws from Kevin Jackson (Baltimore, Md./Walbrook) with 2:50 to play. Bethany would continue to hold the lead, getting two key stops on the defensive end, before Geneva’s Jacob Grim made a layup with 17 seconds to play to give the Golden Tornadoes back the one-point lead (60-59).
After tacking on a free throw to extend the lead to 61-59, Geneva had a chance to ice the game with two seconds to play. Grim missed both free throws and the ball came out to Leslie Addy (Columbia, Md./St. Vincent Pallotti). Addy took two dribbles and fired at the hoop from 65 feet away. The shot, however, fell short, and the Golden Tornadoes went on for the two-point victory.
Bethany was led in the game by Weldon’s 16-point performance. He was an efficient 6-of-7 from the field and 4-of-4 from the charity stripe, while adding six steals and two assists. Jackson finished the game with 15 points and eight rebounds, while Joyce finished with 11.
The Bison now sit at 21-5 on the year and will look to receive a bid to the Eastern College Athletic Conference tournament. Tournament bids and pairings will be announced on Monday, March 3.