Siloam Springs Herald Leader

Golden Eagles pick up win at SAGU


WAXAHACHIE, Texas — Senior James Beckom and freshman Lukas Gabani each scored 18 points, and a run in the final minutes of the contest powered the John Brown University men’s basketball team to a 70-69 win over Southweste­rn Assemblies of God (Texas) on Monday night (Feb. 6) inside the Sheaffer Center.

A game that was once tied at 40 apiece with 16:34 left in the second half featured a pair of big swings, the latter of which the Golden Eagles (8-15, 6-11 Sooner Athletic Conference) took advantage of to remain in the hunt for a postseason berth in the SAC tournament.

The Lions (15-9, 10-8) went on an 11-0 burst to take a 49-40 lead. Down 10 with under 10 minutes to play, John Brown made its move.

Gabani, senior Tyren Collins and freshman Josh Stewart each scored in a quick 7-0 JBU spurt to finish a timely 16-7 run that pulled the visitors within one, 63-62. After trading buckets and free throws, the contest drew level at 66 apiece after a pair of Stewart conversion­s at the line. Then, senior Payton Guiot struck.

Guiot hit his fourth triple of the night to give JBU a threepoint advantage with 56 seconds left. Unfortunat­ely, Noah Boling hit a desperatio­n trey on the ensuing possession, giving the Golden Eagles the ball and 30 seconds left in the game.

Guiot missed a triple with six seconds left, but a Gabani offensive rebound gave JBU new life. Immediatel­y calling timeout, John Brown ran a play from the sidelines, a pass over the bucket to a cutting Gabani crashing the glass. Gabani caught the inbound and directed the ball off the glass, but the attempt didn’t fall. Gabani was, however, fouled on the play.

After missing his first chance at the line with 2.7 seconds left, Gabani drilled his second chance, providing the visitors enough to end its two-game skid in Waxahachie.

“Honestly, what a game,” head coach Jason Beschta said. “For us to fight back as SAGU started to pull away in the second half says a lot about our heart. Both teams made big plays over the last few minutes, and we were fortunate to have made one more tonight.

“Our guys really did a great job on the glass, and Lukas and James led the way with just a relentless effort. I’m super proud of our team; this was a good win against a really good team.”

Beckom and Gabani each finished with double-doubles, Beckom grabbing 11 boards while Gabani led all players with 13. Guiot finished 4-of-11 from behind the arc to contribute 15 points off the bench to help JBU end SAGU’s three-game home winning streak.

The rebounding advantage (41-34) allowed John Brown to overcome 17 turnovers, but most importantl­y, JBU shot over 40 percent (24 of 58) from the floor, and limited the hosts to a 38 percent effort (24 of 63). Twelve offensive rebounds produced 18 second-chance points for the visitors, including the most important final point of the night.

SAGU was led by Noah Boling, who posted a gamehigh 19 points on 5-of-11 shooting, including four triples. Philbert Weekes and Cortland Blake each provided the Lions with 13 points in the loss.

John Brown returns to action at home against Oklahoma Panhandle State on Thursday night (Feb. 9). The Golden Eagles’ fourgame homestand is slated to tip at 7:45 p.m. and will be carried live on the SAC Sports Network.


The Golden Eagles fell on the road at North Texas at Dallas on Saturday as the Trailblaze­rs completed the season sweep of John Brown.

Jules Moor led four Trailblaze­rs in double figures with 19 points, while Tariq Aman had 11 and Curtis Coleman and Demaryon Thornton each had 10.

Tyren Collins and Noah Taylor each scored 13 points to lead John Brown, while Lukas Gabani and James Beckom each had 10.

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