Sat, Jan/22 Final
Men's Basketball
58 Mount Mercy
69 vs. Evangel
Wed, Jan/26 Final - OT
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58 Evangel
53 at Benedictine (KS)
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85 William Penn
84 vs. Evangel
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70 Evangel
49 at Graceland
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86 Evangel
71 at Baker
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56 Central Methodist
62 vs. Evangel
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95 Evangel
73 at Missouri Valley
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84 Evangel
97 at Grand View
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65 MidAmerica Nazarene
67 vs. Evangel
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63 Mount Mercy
71 vs. Evangel
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74 Benedictine (KS)
78 vs. Evangel
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91 Evangel
99 at William Penn
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75 Florida College
72 vs. Evangel
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Wildcats Stop Valor Win Streak at Four, 75-70

Wildcats Stop Valor Win Streak at Four, 75-70

The Basics
Final: Culver-Stockton 75, Evangel 70 | Final Stats
Records: Evangel (13-5, 6-3); Culver-Stockton (13-5, 4-5)
Site: Ashcroft Center

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. Culver-Stockton outscored Evangel 11-5 over the final three minutes of regulation to take control of a nip-and-tuck battle and stop the Valor's four-game win streak with a 75-70 Heart of America Athletic Conference decision Saturday afternoon at the Ashcroft Center.

After Evangel grabbed a 65-64 lead on Jace Coffie's bucket with just over four minutes left in regulation, Culver's Jim King threw down the do-ahead dunk with 2:45 to play. King added two more field goals down the stretch, and Jalen Blaize added a critical three-pointer to help the Wildcats pull out the road victory, despite a 21-4 scoring run by the Valor that brought the home team back from a sizable first-half deficit.

Blaize tallied a game-high 22 points to lead a Culver-Stockton attack that featured four double-figure scorers. The Wildcats needed the balanced team effort to overcome a strong finish by the Valor, which dug itself out of a 16-point first-half hole and nearly completed the comeback victory thanks to a well-rounded performance of its own.

Culver controlled the opening 20 minutes of action, knocking down 17-of-34 field goal attempts in the first half to build a 39-23 cushion with just under three minutes to play in the period. Alonzo Ortiz-Traylor was a perfect 3-of-3 from beyond the arc, while Blaize added 11 first-half points to power the Wildcat offense. C-SC led by just three points midway through the half when a Nick Spannaus basket sparked a 23-10 Wildcat run.

The Valor, which struggled to find a consistent rhythm in the first half, shot just 0.333 as a team in the opening stanza. But three-pointers from Cade Coffman and Edriel Martinborough trimmed the margin to 10 points, before a late Javon Modester layup gave the Wildcats a 41-29 advantage heading into intermission.

Stephen Salvi possessed the hot hand at the onset of the second half, as the sophomore scored eight points over the first 3:42 of the period to lead Evangel's 15-2 spurt that ultimately handed the Valor a 44-43 lead.

From that point, the two clubs traded the lead a total of 13 times in the second half, with neither squad leading by more than four points until the closing seconds. Blaize gave the Wildcats a 62-58 lead with a three-pointer at the 6:39 mark, only to see Coffman answer on Evangel's ensuing possession with a triple of his own. Ike Egwu converted a layup with just under five minutes left on the clock, before Coffie countered an Ortiz-Traylor bucket with a jumper from the right corner for a one-point EU lead.

But Modester corralled an offensive rebound off of a Quntin Wallace miss, then fed a cutting King for the go-ahead slam. King scored again 25 seconds later following a pair of EU misses at the foul line, then sank a 20-foot jumper to extend the Wildcat lead to three points with 53 seconds left after Salvi had scored five straight Valor points.

Evangel attempted to even things up in the closing moments, but came up empty on a Coffman three-point try, before King sealed the outcome by hitting a pair of free throws with four seconds to play.

Martinborough led the Valor with 18 points, and Salvi finished with 16 on 4-of-9 shooting from three-point range. Coffman logged a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds, while Coffie added 10 points and Manrique Alvarado chipped in with eight points and a career-high eight assists.

Culver-Stockton finished the day 31-of-66 (0.470) from the field and 10-of-24 (0.417) from beyond the arc, while the Wildcat defense limited EU to just 29.6-percent shooting from long distance.

LOOKING AHEAD
Evangel returns to the road next Wednesday (Jan. 19) when it travels to Parkville, Mo., for a 7:30 p.m., Heart Conference game against Park at Breckon Sports Center.

For the latest information on Evangel Athletics, visit Facebook at Facebook.com/EvangelValor, Twitter (@EvangelValor), or EvangelAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on their favorite EU teams by downloading the Evangel Athletics Gameday App through the App Store or Google Play.

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