A late surge for the No. 7-ranked Raven Men's Basketball team wasn't enough to beat the Avila University Eagles on Saturday as Avila was able to knock off the Ravens 86-79 to split the regular season matchup with the Eagles.
Benedictine (19-4, 8-3 Heart) started slow offensively because of turnovers and fell behind from precise shooting by Avila (11-10, 5-6 Heart). The Eagles shot 66 percent from downtown and 51 percent from the field in the first half to extend their lead to 20 with 2:30 left in the 1st half.
Defensive energy and hustle plays by the Ravens helped narrow the gap to 13 before half, as the Ravens took a little bit of momentum into the break down, 39-26.
Turnovers, led to easy scores for the Eagles and hurt the Ravens throughout the game. Avila forced 18 turnovers, which translated to 24 points for the Eagles. The Ravens forced 17 turnovers, but were only able to score 14 points off the miscues.
Despite the difference in taking advantage of their turnovers, Benedictine was able to gradually battle back in the second half as they started to connect from beyond the 3-point arc.
Jake Schannuth connected on the Ravens final 3-pointer of the game with 11 seconds remaining but that was all the closer Benedictine would get as the Eagles were able to seal the win at the charity stripe.
John Harris Jr., led the Ravens with 19 points, and Schannuth added a 18. Schannuth connected on 5 of 9 3-pointers as he caught fire late in the game. Brett Fisher finished with 14 points as he converted on 3 of 9 from beyond the 3-point arc.
Benedictine outscored Avila 53-47 in the second half but it wasn't enough to overcome their slow start.
Five Eagles finished in double figures, led by the 18 points of Trey Bales.
The Ravens are off Thursday before hitting the road on Saturday for a 4 p.m. match up in Fayette, Mo., against Central Methodist University.
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Story written by Sports Information Office intern Abdullah Sabir.