The Tabor men hit the ground running in tonight’s conference match-up versus No. 1 Bethany College, blowing past the Swedes for a 70-55 victory. The women put up yet another strong performance to take care of business and remained undefeated in KCAC play.
The men are now 2-1 in conference play and 3-9 overall, while the women improve to 3-0 in the KCAC and are 6-5 overall, maintaining the No. 2 spot behind Southwestern College in the conference standings.
Men – Tabor got a slam-dunk start from senior Ryan Chippeaux to kick off a physical back-and-forth battle in the first eight minutes of play. But when classmate Michael Janzen drained a three-pointer at 12:26 to give Tabor a 14-12 lead and the Bluejays got a stop on the other end of the court, the tide began to turn in Tabor’s favor.
With 10-point and seven-point runs as the clock ran down, helped by two three-pointers from Chance LeBlanc, Tabor earned a double-digit lead. Bethany rallied in the final minutes within seven, but the Bluejays held a 41-32 lead going into the break.
Bethany nabbed a bucket to begin the second half, but Tabor came out with a 10-point run to take back the momentum. At 9:28 Chippeaux hit a three-pointer to give the Bluejays their biggest lead of the game at 22 points, 62-40.
Tabor got a little sloppy as the clock wound down to give Bethany some points, but the defense stood strong and the Bluejays maintained their double-digit lead for the 70-55 win.
Chance LeBlanc had a big night for Tabor, leading with 13 points and going three-of-four from three-point range. Chippeaux earned another double-double with 11 points and rebounds, while Janzen came off the bench and also recorded 11 points.
Women – The Bluejays struggled out of the gate, allowing Bethany to pull ahead by as many as six points, 24-18, with four minutes left in the half. But Tabor rallied for a six-point run in the remaining minutes to tie it up, 26-26, at the break.
Tabor played lights-out in the second half, allowing a Swedes bucket to start out before a 16-point scoring burst put the Bluejays on top, 42-28, with just under 15 monutes remaining.
Bethany managed another basket, but Tabor put together a 10-point run moments later to take control of the game, 55-32, with eight minutes left. From there it was all downhill as the Bluejay bench cruised to the 60-45 victory.
Janelle Rust scored 12 points and pulled down eight rebounds to lead her team on both ends of the court. Katlyn Mary added 11 points, including two three-point shots, while Nikki Lewis recorded 10 points and five assists.