Aberdeen, SD: The Trinity Bible College Lions basketball team has had a busy first half of its basketball year playing twelve games already with two more to go still. First up for the Lions was a 40 mile journey south on highway 281 to face off against rival Presentation College Saints. The Lions were looking to continue their strong play against the Saints Tuesday night in Aberdeen.
The game proved to be as exciting as it was billed to be with 16 lead changes and 14 ties throughout the game neither team could grab complete control. The Lions got ahead early taking a 6 to 2 lead but the Saints answered surging back scoring the next 6 points to take their first lead of the game. The Lions would take the lead right back until the Saints got the game tied again at 21 to 21 with 9 minutes left in the first half. The Lions found themselves back in the lead 35 to 31 with 2 minutes left in the half but the Saints closed the half on a 6 to 2 run to tie the game at 37 apiece as both teams headed into the locker rooms for halftime.
The start of the second half saw the Lions come out quick again taking the lead back going on a 6 to 2 run taking a 43 to 39 lead with 17 minutes to play in the game. The Saints responded again going on a 13 to 5 run to take the lead back at 52 to 48 over the Lions with 14 minutes left. The two teams would continue to battle and find themselves knotted up 59 to 59 with 7 minutes to go and tied again at 62 to 62 with 5 minutes to go in the game. AJ Anthony would then make one of two free throws to take a 63 to 62 lead. Following a Presentation missed field goal the Lions Barry Bighorn converted to give the Lions a 3 point lead with just over a minute to play. The Lions rode a 10 to 2 run over the final two minutes of the game to put away the Saints and get the win 73 to 64.
In the win the Lions were led by senior guard Mikey Rosario who led all scorers with 26 points on 6 for 11 from the field, 4 for 4 on threes and 10 for 11 on free throws. Joining Rosario in double figures was junior AJ Anthony who finished with 18 points (7 for 11 from the field), 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals and sophomore Barry Bighorn who added 13 points and 5 rebounds. Sophomore Nick Lentz added 8 points and 9 rebounds for the Lions. The Lions shot 47 percent (26 for 55) from the field for the game and 89 percent (16 for 18) on free throws and held the Saints to 38 percent (27 for 70) from the field and 25 percent (5 for 20) on three’s. The Saints out rebounded the Lions by just one 36 to 35 but the Saints had 11 offensive rebounds to the Lions 4.
Coach Jordan Nowell said, “We needed to be more competitive in this rivalry.” “Tonight, we took a big step forward.” “I love our crowd,” said Nowell. “They will travel to the ends of the earth for us. They love to be a part of the basketball game. The kids love playing in front of them and they energize us.”
The win moves the Lions to 7-6 on the season with one game to play before they take a break. The Lions travel to Valley City, ND to face Valley City State University on Friday, December 7th at 7:30pm.