Pike boys, girls come up short against Evangel

Published 10:25 pm Thursday, January 9, 2014

Both Pike Liberal Arts varsity teams had their chances to knock off Evangel Christian, but couldn’t get the buckets to fall when needed.

The Patriot boys team fell to the No. 7-ranked Lions 67-60, and the girls lost 58-50 to the third-ranked Lady Lions.

The seven-point loss for the boys was especially tough to swallow because the Patriots didn’t convert at the free throw line.

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Pike hit just eight of 21 shots from the charity stripe.

“We missed 12 or 13 free throws, and shoot less that 50 percent from the line, that’s not good,” said Pike head coach Gene Allen. “We have to shoot better from the line as we get deeper in to area play. Those points will be big in close ball games, just like they were tonight.”

Chan Avant led Pike with 26 points, and Brian Adams added 17 more.

The Lady Pats hung tough for four quarters against highly ranked Evangel, but never could get within striking distance late.

Every time Pike Liberal got on a run, Evangel would answer back with a run of its own.

Despite the loss, Pike head coach Craig Kennedy praised his team’s toughness.

“They played hard tonight, but we need to play smarter at times,” said Kennedy. “The effort is there, it’s just that sometimes they get caught up in things. We need to slow down sometimes, but I love their intensity.

Katie Ward led the Lady Patriots with 16 points. Marlee Tunstill scored 13, and Megan Johnson added eight more.