Evangel splits senior night doubleheader with MidAmerica Nazarene

Phillip Dowden (Evangel Sports Information) SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A furious last minute comeback fell just short on senior night for the Evangel men’s basketball team in a 93-88 loss to MidAmerica Nazarene on Wednesday night in Heart of America action.

The Crusaders see their three-game winning streak come to an end which also ends their postseason hopes. Evangel will miss postseason play for the first time since the 1988-89 season, the second year as members of the Heart.

Nick Yocum helped push Evangel back into the game in the final minutes with a barrage of three-pointers as he knocked down six and finished with a game-high 28 points. However, the Pioneers would hold off the Crusaders in the final seconds to seal the win.

Four other Crusaders finished in double figures as Cody Geiger added 18 points and Marcus Miller tallied 12 points.

MidAmerica Nazarene was able to pull away in the second half thanks to shooting 76 percent from the field on 19-of-25 shooting. Justin Randall led the Pioneers with 20 points on 10-of-15, while David Nelson added 19 points.

Evangel will wrap up the regular season Saturday at Central Methodist. Tipoff from Fayette, Mo., is scheduled for 4 p.m.

Women

Four Evangel University seniors, Allison Swanson, Taylor Longley and Reggine Brown, all helped lead the Crusaders to a 74-64 victory Wednesday night over MidAmerica Nazarene on Senior Night.

The Crusaders now have won five of their last seven games and hold a one-game lead over Grand View in the conference standings for seventh. A finish in seventh or eighth place for Evangel would give the Crusaders a home game Monday night in the first round of the Heart Postseason Tournament.

Swanson was the high scorer among the seniors with 17 points and seven boards. Longley added 15 points and three assists while also going 10-of-14 from the free-throw line to help seal the comeback win. Brown also finished in double figures adding 14 points.

After trailing by nine points in the first half Evangel outscored the Pioneers in the second half and never looked back. The win also gives Evangel a sweep of last year’s national champions.

MidAmerica Nazarene was led by Ellie Dietz who scored 13 points. The Pioneers shot just 29 percent from the field while Evangel outscored MNU 28-14 in the paint.

Evangel will wrap up the regular season Saturday at Central Methodist. Tipoff from Fayette, Mo., is scheduled for 2 p.m.