LINDSBORG — If the Bethany College men want to win the KCAC basketball championship, they can’t afford slip-ups like the one on Saturday.
Second-division Bethel, with just one KCAC victory coming into Hahn Gym, stunned the conference co-leader 85-84 on a putback by Austin Mitchell with 3 seconds left.
Bethany had charged back after being down as many as 19 early in the second half. It looked like the Swedes were going to survive when Khalid Washington scored to give them an 84-83 lead, but Mitchell scored after Deven Goodwin’s shot had been blocked.
Bethany is now 5-2 in the KCAC and fell back into second place behind Tabor. The Swedes are 8-6 overall. Both of their conference losses have come at home to teams in the bottom half of the standings.
Cody Harris is starting to round into form for the Swedes after missing the first six games due to suspension. He had 20 points while Joey Habtemariam had 18 and Washington scored 16. The Swedes had no answer for Goodwin, who scored a career-high 33 points.
• BETHANY WOMEN 79, BETHEL 68 — The Swedes kept Bethel winless in KCAC play behind 19 points by Tehya Peters.
Bethany led by as many as 22 points before the Threshers roared back to cut that margin in half, but it was too little, too late.
Samm Ashida and Kimi Lindshield scored 13 apiece for the Swedes and Sairah Miller furnished 11.
The Swede teams play their final KCAC games of December on Tuesday when they head to Sterling.