Olathe, Kan. -- MidAmerica Nazarene took over sole possession of first place in the Heart of America conference with a 78-64 win over Evangel at Bell Arena in Olathe, Kansas Thursday night.
Evangel trailed by eight in the first half but clawed back within three in the closing moments of the half only to have Rustin Dowd connect on a three-pointer as time expired before halftime putting the Pioneers ahead 38-32.
Dowd then picked up where he left off starting the second half scoring 10 points in a two minute, forty second span helping the Pioneers to a double-digit lead.
The Crusaders fell behind by as much as 21 as MidAmerica Nazarene held them off to preserve the win.
Dowd finished with a game high 21 points while the Pioneers went 8 for 13 on three-point attempts.
Jayme Donnelly and Korry Tillery both had 16 points to lead Evangel.
The loss snaps a five game winning streak for Evangel and drops the 11th ranked Crusaders to 13-5 and 6-2 in the Heart of America conference. 25th ranked MidAmerica Nazarene improved to 15-5 and 7-1 in the HAAC.
Evangel returns home to play Peru State on Saturday. Game time is 4 p.m. at the Ashcroft Center.
Thur., Jan. 17 at Bell Arena
|#11 Crusaders (13-5, 6-2)||64|
|#25 MidAm. Naz. (15-5, 7-1)||78|