LINDSBORG — Bethany College’s men were hoping to begin their charge up the KCAC basketball standings on Thursday.
The Swedes were outlasted 77-69 by Southwestern, which continues to stay within shouting distance of conference leader Tabor, trailing by two games as the Bluejays survived Saint Mary 73-72 on Thursday.
Bethany had no answer for Southwestern’s longtime star and All-America candidate Cameron Clark, who poured in 28 points, 21 in the first half. Chris Waller, who like Clark averages more than 20 points a game, scored 22.
Jonathan Gidson came off the bench to lead the Swedes with 17 and also pulled down 11 rebounds for a double-double. Gary Jones and Larry McLin scored 11 apiece and June Johnson added 10.
Bethany trailed 42-33 at the half and while it did get as close as three in the second half, Southwestern pulled away.
The Swedes, now 2-6 in the KCAC and 5-12 overall, have a chance to get well on Saturday when they host Bethel.
• SOUTHWESTERN WOMEN 59, BETHANY 54 — Just when it appeared the Swedes were going to notch their second KCAC win of the season, the Moundbuilders staged a monumental rally to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.
Bethany was up a healthy 11 points in the fourth quarter, but Southwestern went on a 25-9 tear to stun the Swedes, still in last place in the KCAC at 1-7 and are 4-12 overall.
Joleen Chanco led Bethany with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Dominique Davis and Leslie Caballero scored 13 and 11 points, respectively.
Expected All-KCAC pick Jana Reichenberger had a double-double for Southwestern with 17 points and 12 rebounds.
Bethany hosts Bethel on Saturday.