Early Season Exhibition Games for Men’s Basketball

Early in the 2015-16 season, the Bears men’s basketball team continues to work through their tough non-conference schedule which included two exhibition games this last weekend. On Friday they took on their first of two Sooner Athletic Conference opponents in Wayland Baptist University (Plainview, Texas), and then they played at Southwestern Christian University (Bethany, Okla.) on Saturday afternoon. Both universities are NAIA Division I colleges that can offer up to 11 full-ride scholarships.

Friday night the Bears showed signs of improvement. The Pioneer’s athletic and lengthy backcourt came out firing from all over the court to give them an early lead and head into intermission with a commanding lead, 50-29. Even though the Bears trailed at halftime, they came out in the second half and outscored the Pioneers over the first 14 minutes before allowing the Pioneers to tack onto their lead in the closing minutes of the game. In the 72-107 loss, the Bears were led by freshman Quinton Walker’s (Paris, Texas) 20 points and 5 rebounds.

The following afternoon the Bears traveled to the suburbs of Oklahoma City to take on Southwestern Christian. In a circus of an environment, the Bears were able to stay locked in and give the Eagles a tight game. Over the first ten minutes, the lead shifted back and forth multiple times until the free-throw differential spiked in favor of the Eagles. They took a 45-29 lead into the half. Southwestern opened up the second half with a block and dunk before the Bears clawed their way back. Near the nine minute mark, the Bears trailed by just 10 points. Once again, the Eagles showed some explosiveness to finish out the game in order to win 92-66. Junior Jay Bradley (Wichita, Kans.) and sophomore Jay Milton (Paris, Texas) had 15 and 12 points respectively to pace the Bears.

Next up for the Bears (0-2, 0-0) is a tournament at Mid-America Nazarene (Olathe, Kans.) on Thursday and Friday of this week.