McPherson College Athletics
WINFIELD— It is said, “all good things must come to an end,” and for the McPherson College men’s basketball team, that was its eight-game winning streak. The streak ended at the hands of the Southwestern College Moundbuilders, outlasting the Bulldogs 88-85 at the historic Stewart Field House Thursday night.
The Builders were firing on all cylinders in the first half, knocking down nine, three-pointers and leading by as many as 15 points with 2:25 remaining in the half. Over the final 2:25, the Bulldogs fought back and scored the final eight points of the period, and went into the break only down seven, 49-42.
After the intermission, the Moundbuilders built their lead back up to double digits (60-50) at the 14:51 mark. Again, the Bulldogs responded, and reeled off six unanswered points to trim the lead back down to four. Over the final 13 minutes, the Bulldogs never let the game get away from them, but at the same time, unlike in previous games, they were unable to find a way to get over the hump and take the lead. Three times they cut the deficit to just one point, but on all three occasions, they were unable to get the stop they needed on the defensive end of the floor that would set up an opportunity to take the lead.
The Builders led by four, with 12 ticks on the clock, but Travon Shelvin cut the lead to one on an and-1 foul. The Bulldogs fouled immediately on the inbounds pass and the Builders made both free throws to push the lead back out to three with 3.5 seconds remaining. The Bulldogs needed to go the length of the floor for a chance to tie the game with a three-pointer so they called timeout to draw up the perfect play. They elected to try and throw a long pass past half court, but the ball was intercepted by Southwestern, and time expired, giving the home team the win.
On offense, the Bulldogs had a trio of players finish with double figures, led by a 22 point performance from Delvon Hightower. Joining him in were Shelvin with 16, and Lual Magot with 15. Leading all scorers in the games was the Moundbuilders’ Andrew Hamm, who was one point off his season-high with 34 points.
“Give credit to Southwestern,” Bulldog head coach T.J. Eskildsen. “They played a great game and shot the ball extremely well. I am proud of our guys for competing in a tough environment. We now need to bounce back and have s short memory going into Saturday.”
The loss drops the Bulldogs to 16-6 overall, and 11-5 in the KCAC. They will try and start a new win streak on Saturday when they host the York College Panthers at 5 p.m. the Sport Center.
MAC (83) – Hightower (22), Shelvin (16), Magot (15), Watts (8), Jenkins (8), Paige (6), Rivers (4), Maccoy (3), Munsen (3).