While the Bethany women’s basketball team knew that they had secured a KCAC Postseason Tournament berth going in to Wednesday night, the Swedes knew they would have their hands full with Saint Mary.
A Hannah Ferguson bucket with 1.5 remain put the Swedes up for good as Bethany came from behind to beat Saint Mary, 59-58.
The Swedes led 29-26 after a low scoring first half. Bethany would continue to lead going in to the final stanza, though BC couldn’t ever land the final knockout blow.
Saint Mary would make the Swedes pay for that as a Paige Scheckel jumper in the lane with 9.1 seconds to go put Saint Mary ahead 58-57.
Bethany coach, Keith Ferguson, called a timeout to advance the ball and draw up one final play. The play was originally run for Marissa Pope, but the Spires took her away so, the Swedes got the ball in to the corner and then found Hannah Ferguson down low.
The freshman fumbled the ball for a moment, but regained control and layed in what would be the game’s winning shot to give Bethany its fourth-consecutive win.
Saint Mary (7-20, 5-18 KCAC) played about as well as they could have played in parts of the second half. The Spires were led by Sienna Brown with 21 points, Scheckel with 12 and Rachel Newquist with 11 points.
Bethany (17-12, 13-10 KCAC) now remains alive for a No. 5-seed in the KCAC tournament. The Swedes balanced scoring attacked was paced by both Sena Aktius and Kelsi Mueller with 10 points, each.
The Swedes look to Saturday next, where they’ll play at No. 18 Kansas Wesleyan in a big rivalry game.
BETHANY MEN 64, Saint Mary 58
Bethany’s men’s team would end the game on an 8-0 run to stun Saint Mary.
The Spires led 49-41 with a little more than five minutes remaining. The Swedes continued to chip away at the Saint Mary lead, though Saint Mary held Bethany at arm’s length.
Bethany trailed 58-56 with a little bit more than a minute to go when Swedes’ coach, Dan O’Dowd, called a timeout. The Swedes ran what was supposed to be a play for Tyler Larkin, instead the ball ended up in the hands of Mitch Brown–who was just 1-7 from 3 in the game. But Brown would hit the game’s biggest shot with exactly one minute left to put Bethany in the lead.
Saint Mary came back down and ran a little time before missing a shot. Bethany had the ball with 40 seconds to go and needed another bucket to put the pressure on Saint Mary.
Larkin’s jump shot with 20 seconds remaining was short, but Mookie Duncan was right there for the rebound and stick-back while getting fouled. With the made FT, Bethany led 62-58 with 16-seconds to go.
Duncan would add a steal with an easy basket in the final five seconds to deliver the final dagger to the Spires.
Saint Mary (12-16, 12-11 KCAC) played their second game in three days. Teyvon Lundy scored 15 points to lead the way for Saint Mary, while both Donovan Sinegal and Cameron Southern both chipped in 10.
Bethany (15-14, 11-12 KCAC) remains hopeful for a potential No. 6-seed in the KCAC Tournament. Duncan had yet another double-double with 17 points and pulling down 15 rebounds. Larkin scored 15, Brown had 11–including the go-ahead 3-pointer–and Isiah Saenz chipped in 10 points.
The Swedes next travel to Salina on Saturday for a monumental showdown as part of the First Bank Kansas Smoky Hill Showdown with Kansas Wesleyan. Coverage can be heard on 95.5 The Rock.