It was déjà vu for the Lindsborg crowd Saturday night in Lindsborg. A team builds a large lead, gives it up in the second half, then hangs on for a close win. Sounds familiar, right?
After rallying from 19 down against Friends, only to fall short on Wednesday, Bethany built an 18 point lead against Ottawa, and held on for a 60-58 overtime victory.
Bethany was hitting on all cylinders during a 13-0 run to end the first half. The Swedes led 38-20 at the break, and shot 59% in the first two quarters. However, Ottawa went to a zone defense for the final two sessions, and Bethany started the second half just 4-30 from the floor.
While the final score was tight, Ottawa only led on one possession of the second half and overtime. Freshman guard Jennifer Anthony hit just her third 3-pointer of the year with 2:13 remaining in OT, to give Ottawa a 56-55 advantage. Bethany answered with a free throw to tie the game, then another charity on their next possession to make the score 57-56 Swedes. Bethany guard Lauren Welsch knocked down a short jumper with 00:24 left to give Bethany a 59-56 lead and put the game on ice.
The Swedes got a huge lift from their bench in the contest. Starters Cassidy Enns, and Marissa Pope each picked up two fouls in the first quarter and sat for the rest of the half. Megan Hendrickson had 8, and former Salina Central Mustang Hailey Mayfield had 6 points.
Bethany moves to 2-3 in league play, and travels to York on Wednesday. Tipoff is at 6pm, with pregame at 5:45pm on KVOB, 95.5 The Rock.
OTTAWA 84, BETHANY 68
Bethany coach Dan O’Dowd had no interest in hearing excuses about his basketball team playing poorly Saturday night in Lindsborg. With two starters, and several reserves battling colds, Bethany played like a team under the weather and scored a season-low 68 points.
The Swedes went on a 9-0 run early in the contest to take a 9-3 lead. After starting 4-4 from the field, Bethany missed 17 of their next 22 shots. Ottawa’s Devin Perez hit a corner 3 at the buzzer to end the first half, and gave the Braves a 42-28 lead going into the locker room.
Bethany trimmed the deficit to seven on three separate occasions in the second half. After a Tyler Larkin 3-pointer made it 75-68 with 2:54 to play, Ottawa’s Hollis Mitchell took over. He scored the next four points for the Braves, and won the battle between two of the best point guards in the conference.
Bethany now sits at 2-3 in league action, and travel to York Wednesday for an 8pm tipoff on KVOB, 95.5 The Rock.
By James Westling