Andrew Woodley, Sports Information Director
BETHANY, W.Va. (Jan. 18) – The Bison held off Chatham 64-61 in a Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) contest Wednesday night at the Hummel Fieldhouse.
The Bethany College men's basketball team improves to 11-5 overall, 6-3 in the PAC. Meanwhile, the Cougars, a program in its second year, falls to 4-5 in league play, 8-8 overall.
Chatham split a pair of free throws to trim the Bison lead to 61-59 with 1:08 left in the game. On the ensuing possession, junior guard Andrew Williams (Oil City, Pa./Oil City) missed a three-point attempt as time expired on the shot clock, but the Cougars could not corral the rebound. Senior forward Javonte' Trujillo (Aurora, Colo./Grandview) went to the line with 28 seconds on the clock and buried both attempts to push the lead back to four, 63-59.
Chatham scored on an uncontested layup with five seconds on the clock and immediately sent Trujillo back to the line, where he split his attempts to give Bethany a 64-61 lead. Cougar guard Anthony Bomar grabbed the rebound, crossed the center line and attempted a potential game-tying shot at the horn that rimmed out and preserved the Bison's fifth-straight win.
Junior Liam Davis (Orlando, Fla./Orlando Christian) led the Bison with 15 points, while Williams and Trujillo each added 13 and 12 points, respectively. Senior guard Antonio Rudolph (New Castle, Pa./New Castle) tallied seven points and a game-best 10 rebounds in the win.
The Bison opened the game fast. A layup by Rudolph capped off a 14-5 run to open the first five minutes of the contest. Bethany claimed the first 10 rebounds in the game and did not allow the Cougars a board until the 14:30 mark of the first half.
Chatham responded with 10-straight points over the next five minutes to take a 15-14 lead with 10:08 remaining in the first half. The Cougars stayed ahead of the Bison for the remainder of the half and built its largest lead, 36-30, on a jump shot as time expired in the first half.
The Bison trailed 40-35 with 15:04 left in the game. Seven-unanswered points, capped off with a Rudolph three pointer, helped Bethany reclaim the lead at 42-40 with 12:25 remaining in the contest.
Following a slew of tie scores and lead changes, a three pointer by Trujillo with 9:43 on the clock sparked an 11-5 spurt that propelled the Bison to a 58-51 lead with just over five minutes left in regulation. The Cougars quickly pulled within one basket, 58-56, in the following minute, but a clutch three pointer by junior guard Calique Jones (Pittsburgh, Pa./Obama Academy) with three minutes left in the game pushed the Green & White lead back to five, 61-56.
Chatham finished the game shooting 8-for-27 (30 percent) from three-point range after shooting 6-for-14 (43 percent) in the first half.
Bethany owned the frontcourt, finishing with a 38-to-20 edge in points in the paint and out-rebounding the Cougars 40-to-24, including 14 offensive rebounds.
Chatham's Josh Randall led the Cougars with 13 points off of the bench. Alex Schoppen, the reigning PAC Player of the Week was held to nine points on 2-of-6 shooting (all three-point attempts).
The Bison are back on the court on Saturday, January 21 when they travel to Waynesburg for a tip set for 3:30 p.m.