The NAIA Division II #4-ranked Bethel College Pilots (22-3, 10-1) ran out to a 25-2 lead over the first 10 minutes of play and never looked back as they cruised to the 68-50 win over Huntington University (13-8, 5-6).
The Pilots came out strong defensively and forced Huntington into a few early turnovers and immediately gained the momentum. The Foresters struggled to find any rhythm on offense, hitting just one field goal in their first 13 attempts. Finally Amy Berry got Huntington on track scoring eight consecutive points allowing the Foresters to cut it to 38-19 at the break.
In the second half, Huntington fought its way back to within 13 on three occasions with the last coming on two free throws from Berry at 49-36 with 10:40 to go. Bethel’s Abby Noll finally shut down the Foresters’ rally with back-to-back treys, pushing the lead back to 21, and the Pilots cruised to the 68-50 victory.
Berry topped all scorers in the game with 24 points and Jessah Brumbaugh added 11 for Huntington. Natalie Young and Noll led Bethel with 18 and 16 points respectively. The Pilots shot 45% for the game while the Foresters finished at 32%. Bethel also out-rebounded Huntington 40-28.