DuBOIS — The DuBois Christian School boys basketball team is no stranger to close games, and unfortunately for the Eagles, they found themselves on the wrong end of one for the second time this season against Bethel Erie Friday night.
The visiting Warrriors got a running jumper from from the left corner from Reagan Cook with four seconds remaining before Adam Mowrey’s last-second, half-court shot was off the mark in a 51-49 Bethel victory.
Cook’s game-winner came on the heels of the Eagles battling back from a seven-point deficit (42-35) early in the fourth quarter to pull even at 49-49 on a layup by Colin Thomas with 2:07 to play.
Cook’s jumper were the only points scored from there though as Bethel came away with its second tight win of the season against DCS. The Warrriors edged the Eagles, 52-51 in overtime, in the first meeting in Erie on Jan. 13. Cook finished with a game-high 22 points.
The game also was the third this week decided by two points for the Eagles, who won at Huntingdon Christian Academy 48-46 on Monday and at 55-53 at Calvary Chsristian Academy Thursday as part of a 3-1 week.
“We played four games this week, and they were just fatigued,” said Eagles coach Barth Thomas. “When you’re tired, you don’t make good decisions, and that’s what happened at times tonight. We fought hard, though, and had two games this week that we did win by two.
“It went down to the end today again, and we lost. It was a good game though, and I’m proud of the seniors. They fought hard and this helps get us ready for the playoffs.
‘Erie came down and played tough. That 15 (Cook) just lit us up, but hey ... sometimes you win some, and sometimes you lose some. We’re ready for the playoffs though.”
Bethel’s Spencer Siegel opened the soring before the Eagles put together a 6-0 spurt, four by Alex Hallowell, to grab the early lead. Jeremy McNeil and DCS’s Zaden Thomas then traded 3-pointers before the Eagles eventually closed the quarter on a 6-3 run to lead 15-11.
The Eagles ended out the quarter with a buzzer-beater, as Mowrey scored on a putback off a missed layup by Zaden Thomas on an insbounds play that came with just under five seconds on the clock.
DuBois Christian pushed its lead to six twice early in the second quarter on hoops by Hallowell and Mowrey, with that Mowrey’s putting the Eagles up 19-13. Hallowell finished with 10 points, while Mowrey had seven.
It was all Warriors from there though, as Bethel outscored DCS 12-2 over the final 4:16 of the half to take a 25-21 lead into the break.
Bethel pushed that advantage to seven (30-23) on a 3-pointer by Cook early in the third before the Eagles put together a 7-0 spurt to tie things at 30 with 3:06 left in the quarter. Gabe Hoover had four his team-high 17 points in the run.
The Warriors countered with a 6-0 mini-run of their own though to go back om top before taking a 38-34 lead to the fourth. That lead surged to seven (42-35) on another 3-pointer by Cook in the final quarter before DCS ralied to pull even again (49-49) before Cook’s game winner in the closing seconds.
Zaden Thomas jump-started that comeback with a 3-pointer, while Hoover had six of the 11 points. Thomas scored 11 points to join Hoover and Hallowell in double figures.
DuBois Christian is back in action Thursday when it hosts the annual Allegheny Christian Athletic Assocation Tournament. The Eagles, the No. 2 seed from the West Division, play Grace Prep (No. 3 East) at 8 p.m.