Men's Basketball

Pilots crush Cougars 87-66, reach 6-7 in MCC

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The Pilots received just what the doctor ordered on Jan. 31, as they traveled to Mount Vernon Nazarene to capture a convincing 87-66 win over the Cougars. The Pilots had their backs against the wall, heading into the game with a three game losing streak; however, the Pilots added another monumental road victory to their win column. The game started off very slowly for both teams, as it took about three minutes before Darrell Hopkins made the first basket of the game. From there, the Pilots continued to execute an efficient offense and were relentless on defense. The Cougars struggled to score with their half-court offense and were forced to collect most of their points in transition. Although Bethel led by as many as 13 at one point in the first half, the Cougars found themselves only down 37-30 at the break. In the second half, everything seemed to come together for the Pilots. Deep shooting was provided by Ryan Benner and Zach Miller, the defense continued to gather steals led by Landon Booker, and Darrell Hopkins played very strong in the paint. As a result, Bethel outscored Mount Vernon Nazarene 50-36 in the second half. Overall, this was a very strong road win for the recovering Pilots. Despite the fact that the Cougars are currently in last place in the MCC, they have been playing impressive ball as of late, losing to Indiana Wesleyan in three overtimes over the weekend. In addition, the Pilots traveled roughly five hours on Jan.31 to reach their destination. The team did stop at Bowling Green State’s gymnasium to get a pregame shoot around, with the hopes of keeping their legs fresh. Miller scored 20 points and collected three steals on the evening, as Benner returned to the starting lineup and gathered 20 points as well. Benner also led the team with 8 rebounds. Matt Schauss was also 8 for 18 from the field and scored 17 points. As a team the Pilots forced 20 turnovers and earned nine steals, while only turning the ball over eight times. The Pilots will be on the road again on Feb. 4, as they travel to Saint Francis to take on the second place Cougars. Tip-off for that game is scheduled for 3 p.m.
Ryan Benner was a strong presence for the Pilots as he helped down Mount Vernon Nazarene with a 20 point 8 rebound effort. (photo by Jeff Welsh)
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