The Raven men's basketball team converted 53.3 percent from the floor on Thursday night en route to a 64-52 win over Peru State College inside the Ralph Nolan Gymnasium.
Benedictine (17-9, 9-6 HAAC) was able to keep pace inside the top four in the HAAC standings with the win over Peru State (11-15, 4-11) with just three games remaining in the regular season.
The Ravens are currently tied for fourth place in the HAAC standings with Central Methodist University – their road opponent on Saturday.
Benedictine jumped out quickly to a 7-0 lead before Peru State found the basket.
The Ravens limited the Bobcats looks offensively for most of the first half, pushing ahead by 11 points off a basket from forward Charlie Wallrapp (Jr., Omaha) with seven minutes and 34 seconds left in the half.
Peru State closed within five points minutes later before Benedictine closed the half on a 12- 0 run to lead by 17 at the break.
Benedictine increased its lead to 25 points before Peru State hit its first basket of the second half with 15 minutes and 49 seconds left in the game.
The Ravens remained in front by at least 20 points through the middle third of the second half before Peru State's leading scorer Derrick Williams got hot.
Williams scored nine of his game-high 16 points over a two minute span in the second half that took Benedictine's lead from 20 points to 14 points at 54-40 with five minute and 34 seconds left in the game.
That would be all the closer the Bobcats would get until the final 30 seconds of the game when Jesse Jones converted two of three free throws after he was fouled on a 3-point shot to close the gap to 12 points.
The Ravens forced nine Bobcat turnovers which led to 10 points while the undersized Ravens managed to outscore the Bobcats in the paint, 32-30.
Three player finished in double figures, led by Wallrapp's 13-point effort while Jonathan Anaekwe and Steven O'Brien each added 12 points.
Williams was the only Bobcat in double figures.
The Ravens hit the road for two straight, the first at 4 p.m. Saturday in Fayette, Mo., against Central Methodist University. Central Methodist beat Missouri Valley 76-72 on Thursday night in Marshall, Mo.
The first time around against CMU, Benedictine needed a last-second shot from guard John Harris, Jr. (Fr., Lincoln) to escape with a 51-50 win.
Saturday's winner will have a leg up on the rest of the HAAC pack the fourth seed in the upcoming HAAC Postseason Tournament heading into the final week of the regular season.