LINDSBORG — It was a performance for the ages.
Friends University’s Toby Baxter spent Saturday night in a rarefied zone, making 13 of 15 floor shots and all 16 of his free throws for 46 points to lead the Falcons past Bethany College 97-91, dropping the highly touted Swedes to 0-2 in the KCAC after they were picked to be a top contender.
Baxter’s point total tied the Hahn Gym record, set two years ago by Swede All-American Idris ibin Idris.
Friends was making its KCAC debut as it was the odd-team out Thursday in the new conference alignment that now includes 11 teams. It also was the Falcons’ first win of the year after five losses, as they are coming off a season in which they made the national tournament.
For Bethany, the overall record is now 2-5 and again the culprit was defense, as the Swedes continue to give up points at a rapid pace.
Jonathan Gidson certainly did his part for Bethany with 34 points and Gary Jones added 22. Larry McLin chipped in with 17 and Joey Habtemariam supplied 11. The Swedes are still missing All-America candidate Cody Harris, out with a bad ankle. Also missing is June Johnson, who has served two games of an eight-game suspension.
What help Baxter needed came from Chris Singhateh and Brandon Johnson with 13 points apiece.
Bethany is the odd-team out in the KCAC on Tuesday as it doesn’t play again until Friday as it takes on Central Christian College of McPherson in the Colorado Classic.
• FRIENDS WOMEN 71, BETHANY 62 — The Swedes showed their improvement as they were far more competitive against the Falcons than they’ve been the past few years.
Nevertheless, Bethany is now 0-2 in the KCAC and 2-6 overall.
The Swedes actually had the game in their hands, up 45-35 in the third quarter, but the Falcons clamped down defensively the rest of the way.
Adriane Davis pitched in 14 points to lead Bethany, while Dominique Davis added 10. KCAC Player of the Year candidate Shann Sellers could not be stopped as she scored 24 points.
Bethany plays on Monday at Grace University in Omaha, Neb., then is off the rest of the week. It plays an exhibition game on Nov. 30 at Newman University before resuming KCAC action Dec. 3 when it hosts Tabor.