Blue Mountain Christian and Bethel men’s basketball met for the second time this season on Monday night, Nov. 13, with the Toppers exacting revenge from the first game winning 87-75.
A stellar first half from Jalen Boyd-Savage and a flaming second half from guard Manny Patrick catapulted the Toppers to the big non-conference matchup with a 20-point second half.
The two teams traded leads early in the game with the Wildcats eventually pulling out to a 10-point lead.
Boyd-Savage would pull the Toppers to within seven at the break as he drained a three at the halftime buzzer from the corner. Boyd-Savage led all scorers at the half with 14 points.
The Toppers continued to cut into the Bethel lead after the break, tying it with 11 minutes left in the game as Patrick hit two free-throws to make it 48-48.
Patrick struck again with less than 10 minutes, picking the pocket of Querrion Gadson and following the steal with a layup to give the Toppers a 54-50 lead.
Ty Pickron would give BMCU its biggest lead of the game at 72-64 at the 4:30 mark when he buried a three from deep.
Pickron would hit another from deep with 2:45 to give the Toppers a 78-68 lead down the stretch, followed by a three from Patrick.
Darien Newchurch and Boyd-Savage would drain free-throws late in the game to secure the victory for the Toppers.
“We made some adjustments in the second half and shot the ball much better,” BMCU head coach Jermael Bingham said. “Manny woke up and possibly had one of the best halves of his career. It was a good effort from our guys and it’s always a big win if you can top a team like Bethel.”
Boyd-Savage and Patrick both led the way with 20 points each while Pickron chipped in 16. Keevin Etienne had a quiet 14 points with eight rebounds.
BMCU (4-2) will get its first taste of SSAC play Thursday as they head to Dalton State in Dalton, Georgia with tip set for 7:30 p.m.