Ellendale, ND: The Trinity Bible College Lions got the opportunity to host all three of its North Central Region opponents all in one weekend. The weekend saw Providence University College face off against North Central University on Friday afternoon, in which North Central came out on top 102 to 71. The Lions then got to play Faith Baptist Bible College at 8pm.
The Lions opened the game with an 8 to 2 run over the first five minutes of the game and never looked back. The Eagles would try to stick close and with just 10 minutes left in the first half they closed the Lions lead back down to 6 points 19 to 13. The Lions then pushed the lead to 13 points with 2 minutes left in the half before taking an 18 point lead into halftime 45 to 27. In the first half the Lions were led by Mikey Rosario’s 19 points and AJ Anthony’s 11 points, who at the break were combined for 30 points compared to the Eagles 27. The Lions were shooting 52 percent (19 for 36) from the field in the first half and held the Eagles to 38 percent (12 for 31) from the field.
In the second half the Lions defensive pressure and offense put the game way out of reach. The Lions opened the first eight minutes of the second half on an 18 to 7 run to push the Lions lead to 29 points 63 to 34. The Lions then outscored the Eagles 36 to 13 over the final 12 minutes of the game to go on to beat Faith Baptist 99 to 47. The Lions defense held the Eagles to just 20 points in the second half and 26 percent shooting (7 for 26). The Lions offense continued to stay hot as they shot 52 percent (22 for 42) from the field in the second half and 47 percent (7 for 15) on threes.
In the win the Lions had three players reach double figures, Mikey Rosario who led all scorers with 27 points on 12 for 17 from the field, AJ Anthony had 19 points and 4 steals and David Rohrbach had 14 points. The Lions finished the game shooting 41 for 78 (52 percent) from the field and 10 for 23 on threes. They also forced 33 Eagle turnovers and held them to 33 percent shooting from the field. The win moved the Lions to 5-5 on the season.
Saturday’s day of basketball saw Faith Baptist Bible College face off against Providence University College at 2pm, with Faith Baptist winning 72 to 62. Then the Lions took to the floor at 6pm in what was a rematch of the North Central Region championship game from a year ago against the North Central University Rams.
The Lions came out hot again taking the early lead over the rams 10 to 7 with 16 minutes left in the first half. The Lions would hold the lead until the 7 minute mark when the Rams went on a 13 to 2 run to take a 10 point lead over the Lions 35 to 25 with 4 minutes left in the first half. The Lions would fight to close the Rams lead to just 4 points at halftime 37 to 41. Both teams were shooting well in the first half with the Rams shooting 45 percent and the Lions shooting 43 percent from the field. The Rams also held a slight rebounding advantage at halftime with 13 offensive boards compared to the Lions 7.
The second half was another battle between the two teams in which the Lions would fight to take the lead back and would tie the game at 55 to 55 with 13 minutes left in the game. The Lions then would go on a 16 to 6 run to take their biggest lead of the game 71 to 61 with 9 minutes to play. However the Rams would respond going on a 10 to 0 run to tie the game back up at 71 apiece with 5 minutes to play. The Rams would then close out the game with an 11 to 4 run holding on to defeat the Lions 82 to 75.
In the loss the Lions had three players reach double figures, led by Mikey Rosario’s 22 points, Barry Bighorn added 17 points, 6 steals and 4 assists and AJ Anthony added 16 points and 5 rebounds. The Rams senior Nathan Roeder led all scorers with 41 points. The Lions lost the battle in the paint as the Rams scored 40 points in the paint to the Lions 20 points. The Lions did force 34 Rams turnovers but committed 25 of their own. The loss drops the Lions to 5-6 on the season.
Sunday afternoon saw the final game of the weekend between the North Central Region teams. The Lions got to cap off the weekend against Providence University College Freemen. The Lions would again come out with a fast start going on a 9 to 2 run to open the game. The Freemen would fight back as they would go on a 12 to 9 run to cut the Lions lead to just 4 points 18 to 14 with 11 minutes left in the first half. The Lions would then outscore the Freemen over the final 11 minutes of the half 30 to 22 to take the 12 point lead into halftime 48 to 36. The Lions had 3 players in double figures in the first half, and they were being paced by the sophomore center Nick Lentz who had 17 points and 9 rebounds at the break. Barry Bighorn added 15 first half points and Mikey Rosario pitched in 10.
The Lions would put the game on ice in the second half after getting up 16 points 69 to 53 with 10 minutes to play. The Lions would push the lead to28 points 92 to 64 with 3 minutes to play in the game. Then at the 2:34 mark junior center Joshua Bialik got Ray Ulmer Fieldhouse to erupt with a dunk giving the Lions the 97 to 69 lead. The Lions would go on to win by 25 points 100 to 75 over Providence University College.
In the win the Lions center Nick Lentz would finish with a nice double double 26 points and 12 rebounds. Joining him in double figures was Mikey Rosario who added 24 points and 6 rebounds, Barry Bighorn, who finished with 15 points, 6 rebounds and 6 steals and AJ Anthony who added 10 points and 7 assists. The Lions finished the game shooting 44 percent from the field on 37 for 84 shots. The Lions also grabbed 17 offensive rebounds and 16 steals.
The win moves the Lions to 6-6 on year with 2 games to play in the first semester. The Lions travel south on highway 281 to face off against Presentation College Saints on Tuesday, December 4th at 7:30pm at the Strode Activity Center in Aberdeen, SD. They then finish the first semester playing at Valley City State University on Friday, December 7th at 7:30pm.