WICHITA — It was a night — and a week — the Bethany College men would like to throw in the trash.
A week that started with such great anticipation ended with a decisive thud on Saturday as the Swedes were taken apart by Friends, 81-50.
Bethany had started the week 9-6 overall and 6-2 in the KCAC, but it lost to Central Christian College on Monday on a last-second shot, was defeated by conference leader Tabor on Thursday when it had a chance to tie for the KCAC lead, then basically was a no-show against Friends, which led by 15 points at the half and outscored Bethany by 16 in the second half.
Ian Merzwinski had a double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds, but the normal Bethany stars were silenced. The Swedes were an unsightly 18 of 63 from the field.
Toby Baxter was on fire for Friends with 29 points.
Now 6-4 in the KCAC and three games back of Tabor, Bethany is back home on Thursday and has no bargain as high-scoring Saint Mary comes to town.
• FRIENDS WOMEN 89, BETHANY 48 — Wanna know why Friends’ women lead the KCAC? Just take a look at what they did to Bethany.
Friends is now 9-0 as Lexi Evans poured in 20 points, Yowanna Posey had 17 and probable first-team All-American Shann Sellers had 13 as she was able to spend some time on the bench because of the largesse of the margin.
Bethany, now 2-8 in the KCAC and 3-12 overall, was led by Ashton Burdick, who had 16 points and 9 rebounds.
The Swedes entertain Saint Mary on Thursday after playing at Central Christian College on Tuesday.