Score: Evangel 81, #25 Peru State 88 | Box Score
Records: Evangel (3-4, 1-2); Peru State (3-2, 2-1)
Location: Springfield, Mo. | Ashcroft Center
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A late rally for the Evangel men's basketball team came up just short Saturday 88-81 to No. 25 Peru State in Heart Conference play.
After trailing 45-38 at halftime the Crusaders managed to cut the Peru State lead to six points with 1:39 left in the game. However, the Bobcats found an answer to every Evangel run before eventually closing out the conference win.
"We were our own worst enemy tonight," said head coach Steve Jenkins. "Missed free throws and our lack of rebounding, combined with not making shots that fell on Wednesday night. Credit Peru, they found their energy and played really well when they needed to."
The Crusaders finished 14 of 24 from the free-throw line and were out-rebounded 37-29.
"We still have a lot of learning to do," Jenkins added. "Tonight, was similar to the C of O game. We can't have our play drop off whether it is off the bench or our starters."
A hot start for the Crusaders saw Evangel shoot 56 percent from the floor in the first half. Peru State shot 51 percent as they managed to overcome an early lead for Evangel to start.
The Crusaders led by 12 at the 13:57 mark of the first half before the Bobcats started their rally.
Peru State was led by 24 points from Devon Colley, while Kendrick Robinson posted a double-double with 14 points and 12 boards.
"In this conference, you have to bring the same intensity every night," said Jenkins. "We need the same level of defense from our bench and our starters. Both halves and every night."
Evangel continues Heart action Tuesday night on the road at Central Methodist. Tipoff from Fayette, Missouri is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
For the latest information on Evangel Athletics, follow the Crusaders on Facebook at Facebook.com/EvangelAthletics or go to www.EvangelAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the Go Evangel Front Row App at EvangelAthletics.com/FrontRow available on Google Play and in the App Store.