Siloam Springs, Ark. (December 12, 2009) - The JBU men’s basketball team closed out the first semester with an 85-70 win over Bacone (Okla.) on Saturday afternoon in Murray Sells Gymnasium. The Golden Eagles are off to their hottest start of the Clark Sheehy era, and currently own an 11-1 overall record and 3-1 record in the Sooner Athletic Conference.
Freshman Coleson Rakestraw and junior Sam Bartlett threw a one-two punch combo at Bacone (4-4) after finishing with 24 and 22 points respectively. Combined, the two shot 15-of-23 from the floor for over 65 percent.
The Warriors got a game high 29 points and seven rebounds from Ronnie Battle. Chad Tyler added 12.
JBU jumped out to an early 8-2 lead after a Rakestraw dagger from deep, but BC responded with a 7-2 run to cut the JBU lead to one, 10-9, at the 14:48 mark. With 4:43, JBU was able to pull away to their largest lead of the half at 34-20 before closing out with the 10 point, 40-30 margin going into the locker rooms.
In the second half, both teams opened up the half trading blows before JBU managed to up the tempo and increase their lead to 17, 59-42, with 12:30 left in the game.
Bacone wouldn’t go away though, and cut the game to single digits, 74-66, with 3:11 left on the clock. After a pair of free-throws from Andrius Mikutis and a three from Abel Galliguez, JBU pushed it back to a double digit lead. But with 1:48 left, Battle converted a tough three-point play to cut it back down to a single digit game, 79-70.
JBU stepped up their defense in the final 1:30 and closed out the game on a 6-0 run to hand BC their fourth loss of the year.
Overall, JBU shot 53.6% (30-56) for the game, including 41.7% (10-24) from deep. Bacone, meanwhile, only hit 35.4% (23-65) of their attempts and struggled from long distance only canning 29.6% (8-27) of their attempts.
JBU owned the boards claiming a 46-30 rebounding edge, but struggled taking care of the ball committing 22 turnovers to only 13 from Bacone.
JBU will be off for the Christmas holidays and will return to action on Saturday, January 2 when they travel to Northwestern Okla. State for SAC action. Game time is 8 p.m.