LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN -- The Covenant men's basketball team used a strong second half to come away with a 74-67 win over Berea on Wednesday night inside Barnes PE Center.
The win continued to set records for Covenant (17-7, 16-1 USA South). The victory was the 17th of the season, breaking a record for number of regular season victories in the NCAA era of the program.
Will Crumly led the way for the Scots with 26 points and 10 rebounds, getting his 10th double-double of the year. Bailey Spragg recorded his second straight double-double, and just missed a triple-double, with 18 points, 10 rebounds, and a team-high nine assists.
Covenant got off to a slow start, but grabbed the lead for the first time after a Spragg 3-pointer made it 19-18 with 8:56 left in the half.
Berea (11-13, 6-11 USA South) led for 12 minutes of the first half, but the Scots held a 36-34 advantage at the break. Covenant hit 45.2 percent (14-of-31) in the opening half as Crumly scored 14 of his game-high 26 points in the period.
The visiting Mountaineers regained the lead in the early part of the second half. Trailing 50-48 with 13:32 left, Covenant rattled off nine straight points, capped by a Crumly bucket, to grab a 57-50 lead with 11:17 remaining.
After Berea closed the gap to two (57-55), Covenant went on a 9-2 run to extend the lead to 68-59, ended by a James Mitchell 3-pointer with 5:51 remaining. With under three minutes to go, a Mitchell Hollis 3-pointer gave the Scots their largest lead of the game, making it 73-63 as the Scots pulled away for the win.
Mitchell and William Bryan contributed nine points each for the Scots. Hollis had six points and Noah Oetjen came off the bench to dish out four assists and grab five rebounds. Jackson Fitzgerald added four points and a career-high five assists.
Covenant outrebounded Berea 39-32, holding the visitors to two offensive rebounds. Covenant converted Berea's 12 turnovers into 16 points. The Scots connected on 43.9 percent (29-of-66) from the field and had 20 assists on those 29 field goals.
Berea got 19 points from Mitchell Embree, 15 from Isaac Caudill, 13 from Andrew Doty, and 12 from Torell Carter. Berea shot 44.6 percent (25-of-56) from the floor with seven 3-pointers and 10-of-12 at the foul line.
Covenant will host Maryville at 3 p.m. on Saturday for the final game of the regular season. Senior Day recognition will take place before the contest.
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