DUBUQUE, Iowa—What. A. Win. The Faith Eagles (3-4) only led conference foe Emmaus for 38 seconds in the second half, but it was the 38 seconds that mattered the most.
After trailing by as many as 12 points midway through the second half, and by nine with less than three minutes to play in regulation, the Eagles men's basketball team stormed from behind with a thrilling 87-83 win on the road at Emmaus College in Dubuque Tuesday night.
Faith stumbled out of the gates at the beginning, falling into an early 11-2 deficit, before a pair of buckets by Jason Conable and one by Sam Pedersen woke the Eagles from their slumber. A Pedersen three-pointer gave the Eagles a 14-13 lead with 12:35 remaining in the first half. The lead would change hands nine times the remainder of the half with both teams jockeying for momentum. Faith trailed by only three at halftime, 39-36. The largest lead for either team, the last ten minutes of the first half, was four points.
The first five minutes of the second half was more of the same as the two teams played neck and neck. Things began to unravel for Faith, however, as Emmaus embarked on a 13-1 run to take a fourteen point lead with 8:39 remaining.
Faith continued to trail by as many as nine with just 2:49 left in regulation, and things looked bleak for the Eagles before a three-pointer by freshman guard Micah Stinson with 2:18 remaining cut the lead from nine to six. Emmaus answered with a layup to stretch the lead back to eight.
Eagles forward Jason Conable, who had one of his best games of the season, drilled a huge three-pointer to bring Faith back within five, and a layup by Micah Stinson with 1:31 remaining cut the Emmaus lead to three. Another key basket by Conable came with 1:09 remaining, which cut the Emmaus lead to one.
One of the most important stretches of the second half was fueled by senior guard Cole Glanzer, back from an injury that had sidelined him for several games. Glanzer made some clutch plays down the stretch for the Eagles, beginning with a steal with 1:14 left that led to the Conable layup. Glanzer added a big defensive rebound with 40 seconds remaining and fed the ball to Sam Pedersen, who connected on a three-pointer to give the Eagles the lead, 85-83, with just 24 seconds remaining. It was the first lead for Faith since the 17:17 mark in the second half. Glanzer sealed the Faith victory with two made free throws with 13 seconds left, giving the Eagles the 87-83 win.
Faith's scoring attack was a balanced one, with four players scoring in double figures. Tanner Van Beek led all scorers with 23 points, followed by 20 from Micah Stinson, 16 from Jason Conable, and 13 from Sam Pedersen. Faith shot an even 50% from the field, including 8 of 16 from three-point range.
The Eagles return to action Thursday night with a 7:00 tip at Grand View University (5-5).