MISHAWAKA – As of Jan. 18, Bethel has four teams in-season: the Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving teams and the Men’s and Women’s Basketball teams.
After interviewing all three of the coaches for these teams, one theme remained constant: gratefulness. It was stressed that they were concerned the season would be cut short due to COVID-19, but for Bethel, athletic teams have remained in competition. Coach Deborah Thompson, the Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving coach, credits Bethel for being prepared.
“It is due to Bethel and the administration having a good plan in place,” Thompson said.
The Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving teams resumed competition on Jan. 8 against Manchester University. Both teams won by a large margin. The men won with a score of 81-24 and the women won with a score of 90-5. The teams scored wins again on Jan. 15 against Olivet College, the men winning 143-88 and the women winning 141-81.
When asked about the teams’ first meet and how they will build on the results Thompson said she wanted to see where her teams were at following winter break.
“We were swimming to see where we are at during this part of the season,” Thompson said.
The Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving teams will be in action again on Jan. 23 at 2 p.m. against Anderson University.
The Women’s Basketball team continued competing over the break. They had eleven games scheduled, but COVID-19 altered their plans somewhat. Out of the eleven games that were scheduled, three were either postponed or canceled. The women’s basketball team has also lost multiple opponents on their non-conference schedule due to COVID-19.
During the winter break stretch the Women’s Basketball went 1-6. Despite going through a rough patch, Coach Doug Porter is still optimistic of things to come for his team.
“I really like their energy and aggressiveness,” Porter said. “They have a very receptive attitude and have been vocal on the court. They do their best to improve each day and have been very coachable.”
The Women’s Basketball team was last in action on Jan. 16 against Goshen College at Goshen. They lost that game 80-75. The Lady Pilots were led by senior Kelsey Brickner who had 18 points and 14 rebounds. They will take the court next on Jan. 20 against the sixth-ranked Marian Knights. It will take place on Bethel’s campus at 7 p.m.
The Men’s Basketball team has gotten off to a hot start so far this season with a record of 14-3. Over the course of the break the Men’s Basketball team went 10-2. This included a trip to Miami, Fla., where the Pilots faced off against Florida National University. They won that game with the score of 117-98. They did have multiple games canceled due to COVID-19, but they also saw a stretch where they took the court five times in ten days.
When asked about this years’ roster Coach Steve Drabyn said it’s been a great mix of new and returning players.
“We have nine guys back this year, and that has created some rhythm and continuity,” Drabyn said. “With the six newcomers, they’ve been able to connect with their teammates and learn within the system.”
The Pilots last took the court on Jan. 16 against Goshen College. They won that game by a score of 91-84. Senior guard TreVion Crews led the pilots with 33 points, 6 Rebounds and 5 Assists. They will next take the court on Jan. 20 against the tenth-ranked Marian Knights.