OBU earns first road win at SNU since 2010

BETHANY – In building a basketball program under Jason Eaker, the Oklahoma Baptist men’s basketball team has been through plenty of ups and downs for the third-year head coach.

And as the program begins to reach new heights at the NCAA Division II level, there’s been one hill the Bison had yet to overcome.

The Sawyer Center in Bethany, Oklahoma.

OBU lost seven straight road contests to perennial GAC power Southern Nazarene dating back to 2010.

On Monday night in Bethany, OBU trailed by double digits for most of the contest and faced a 14 point deficit with under 6:30 to play in the game. It seemed as if it was business as usual, just another blowout win for SNU over OBU inside the Sawyer.

However, the Bison flipped a switch and went on a massive 18-0 run for the next five minutes to overtake the lead and hold off any sort of late-game heroics to leave Bethany with a stunning 60-57 victory over the Crimson Storm.

The first half could not have gone more poorly for OBU, only going 6 of 22 from the field. Meanwhile, SNU was on fire, going 13 of 26 (50%) with six 3-pointers.

The Bison trailed 33-19 at halftime.

Overall OBU had a tough night shooting the ball for most of the contest, going 18 of 49 (37%) from the field and 9 of 25 (36%) from deep. On the other side, SNU was also 18 of 49 and was 9 of 26 (35%) from deep.

One of the biggest factors in the contests was free throws. OBU finished 15 of 16 (94%), including clutch ones down the stretch, while the Crimson Storm were just 12 of 21 (57%) from the line. OBU held a 34-31 rebounding advantage and turned it over 14 times to SNU’s 12.

Jarius Hicklen scored 23 points off the bench on 6 of 9 shooting and three 3-pointers to go with five rebounds while Simms added 19 points on five 3-pointers and six boards. Brantly Thompson scored six with four rebounds despite fouling out, while Wilcox scored five points with seven rebounds.

Trey Green did not get in the scoring column but had four rebounds and three steals on the night. while Harrison Stoddart was held scoreless but recorded five rebounds and one steal. Jordan Thompson chipped in five points off the bench.

Adokiye Iyaye led SNU with 25 points and eight rebounds, while Manny Dixon and Karlyn Kenner each had 11.

OBU moves to 9-3 overall and 9-2 in the GAC and has won eight in a row. They return home to the Noble Complex on Thursday as they welcome in East Central. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. and will be carried on the Bison Sports Network.

Final Score, Bison 60, Crimson Storm 57

Oklahoma Baptist (9-3, 9-2)194160
Southern Nazarene (6-6, 6-6)332457


Points-OBU, Jarius Hicklen 23, Jaquan Simms 19, Brantly Thompson 6, Nigel Wilcox 5, Jordan Thompson 5, Trace Boling 2. SNU, Adokiye Iyaye 11, Karlyn Kenner 11, Maik Bouwer 4, Xavier Bryant 3, Nick Davis 2, Mo Wilson II 1.

Rebounds-OBU, Wilcox 7, Simms 6, Hicklen 5, Harrison Stoddart 5, B. Thompson 4, Trey Green 4. SNU, Iyaye 8, Wilson II 7, Bouwer 4, Davis 4, Dixon 2, Kenner 2, Karsten Berg 1.

Assists-OBU, Hicklen 3, Simms 1, J. Thompson 1, Justin Tene 1. SNU, Wilson II 3, Iyaye 1, Bouwer 1, Dixon 1, Berg 1, Bryant 1.

Steals-OBU, Green 3, Stoddart 1, Boling 1. SNU, Wilson II 2, Dixon 2, Iyaye 1.

Blocks-OBU, Wilcox 2.