Score: Evangel 84, Baker 72
Records: Evangel (7-4, 6-1), Baker (3-4, 1-2)
Location: Collins Center
BALDWIN CITY, Kan. – Behind a career-high 31 points from Cade Coffman, the Evangel men's basketball team turned in one of its best offensive performances of the season in an 84-72 road win over Baker Saturday afternoon at the Collins Center.
Coffman went 6-of-9 from three-point range and 11-of-16 overall from the floor to match his previous career-best 31-point effort against Missouri Valley on Feb. 26, 2020. The junior All-American canned five treys in the first half, including three during a 25-9 EU scoring run that turned a tie ballgame into a 42-26 Crusader advantage.
Evangel shot 0.493 from the floor with a season-high 33 field goals, including 15-of-27 (55.6%) showing from beyond the arc, which also represented team-best season figures.
Coffman powered the Crusaders' attack in the early stages of the game, connecting on a pair of threes while scoring eight of Evangel's first 10 points. EU led by eight before Baker scored 10 of the next 12 points to pull even at 17-17 with just under 11 minutes to play in the opening half.
Edriel Martinborough, who finished the game with 17 points on 5-of-6 shooting from three-point range, kick-started Evangel's critical response with his first triple of the day at the 9:00 mark. The junior combined with Chris Stocks and Coffman to tally 25 of Crusaders' final 27 points in the half. His long jumper with just under six minutes left on the clock sparked a string of 10-straight EU points that turned a one-point game into 34-23 advantage.
Coffman would take command from there, draining three straight shots from beyond the arc over a one-minute, 25-second span to extend the lead to 16 points.
After EU took a 44-32 lead into intermission, Coffman added five more points over the first five minutes of the second half to preserve the margin.
But Baker used a pair of Michael Brooks buckets and a Jalen Patterson three to slice the EU lead to five points with just under 10 minutes to play.
Kendall Sutton responded with a pair of three-point makes over the ensuing two minutes, handing the Crusaders a 66-57 lead. Martinborough would follow his lead, drilling a trey with 6:28 to play after BU had pulled back to within eight, then hitting from distance again on EU's next possession to stretch the lead to 74-60.
The Wildcats would get no closer than 12 points the rest of the way, with EU extending the margin to as many as 20 on Coffman's final basket of the night with 2:46 left on the clock.
Evangel finished with a 2-to-1 assist-turnover ratio, committing just nine turnovers for the game while registering 18 assists. Josh Pritchett handed out a season-high six helpers to lead EU.
In addition to big scoring days from Coffman and Martinborough, Stocks recorded a season-high 10 points, eight of which came during EU's critical first-half scoring run.
Braden Wiggs led BU with 15 points and a game-high nine rebounds. The Wildcats shot 0.403 (25-of-62) from the floor, but went just 8-of-26 (0.308) from three-point range.
Evangel will return to the Ashcroft Center for a Tuesday (Dec. 15) Heart Conference contest against Clarke (4 p.m.) before enjoying a three-week holiday break.
For the latest information on Evangel Athletics, follow the Crusaders on Facebook at Facebook.com/EUAthletics, Twitter (@EUAthletics), or visit EvangelAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the new Evangel Crusaders GamedayApp through Google Play.