Score: Evangel 91, Mount Mercy 89 | Box Score
Records: Evangel (12-8, 8-6); Mount Mercy (9-10, 4-9)
Location: Springfield, Mo. | Ashcroft Center
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Wild.
Looking for a better adjective to describe Saturday's 91-89 win for the Evangel men's basketball team over Mount Mercy might be hard to find.
Leading by three with 4.7 seconds left, Nate Davis went 1 of 2 at the free-throw line to put the Crusaders up by three, 81-78. As the Mustangs scampered back down the floor, Streeter McIlravy was fouled on a three-point attempt with 0.8 seconds left on the clock.
McIlravy made all three to send the game to overtime after the second half saw nine ties and three lead changes.
In overtime, Edriel Martinborough would hit a three-pointer off an offensive rebound to put the Crusaders up early. Mount Mercy hung tough before Clark Brewington drilled a three-pointer, also off an offensive rebound with 2:15 left to put Evangel up for good.
"We need to do a better job of making our free throws," said head coach Steve Jenkins. "If we do that, overtime isn't that exciting or we might not even go to overtime."
The Crusaders were 20 of 28 from the free-throw line to finish 71 percent in the game as Evangel won its first overtime game since 2015. It was also the first win over Mount Mercy since the Mustangs joined the Heart, snapping a six-game skid to the school form Iowa.
Cade Coffman recorded his second consecutive 20-point effort finishing with 24 points and 11 boards. The double-double is also the second in three games for the sophomore.
After being held to just six points in the first half, Martinborough added 15 in the second half to finish with 21 points as well.
"Our guys showed resilience today and that was a new fight we had to go through," Jenkins added. "It so important to win on your home floor too. So that was really key as in this conference, nothing is easy. Every game is a battle."
Brewington also finished in double figures with 13 points and seven assists. The Crusaders as a team tallied 19 assists on 30 field goals.
Defensively, Evangel helped limit the nation's fourth-best three-point shooting team to just 4 of 21 for 19 percent in the second half from behind the arc. The Mustangs made eight three-pointers in the first half.
Mount Mercy was led by McIlravy who finished with 27 while, Bailey Basala added 12 points and 11 boards.
Evangel returns to the road on Thursday for a crucial matchup at Baker. Tipoff from Baldwin City, Kansas is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
For the latest information on Evangel Athletics, follow the Crusaders on Facebook at Facebook.com/EvangelAthletics or go to www.EvangelAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the Go Evangel Front Row App at EvangelAthletics.com/FrontRow available on Google Play and in the App Store.