PERU, Neb. – The Raven men's basketball team continued their hot start to the season on Thursday night as they opened up conference play on the road against Peru State College.
Benedictine (7-1, 1-0 HAAC) led from the start and held off a second-half surge by Peru State (3-6, 0-1 HAAC) to earn a 80-70 win.
The Ravens set the tone with their defense in the first half, limiting the Bobcats to just six field goals – all 3-pointers – while forcing 11 turnovers.
Benedictine's first-half offensive attack was anchored from beyond the arc. The Ravens went 10 of 12 from beyond the 3-point arc in the first half, which allowed them to build as much an an 18-point lead over the first 20 minutes of the game.
As the second half started, the Ravens continued to maintain their double-digit advantage while the Bobcats started to warm up on the offensive end.
Benedictine pushed their lead to 21 points with just under eight minutes left in the game before Peru State went on a 18-4 run that cut the Ravens lead to seven points with 90 seconds left in the game.
The Ravens made six of their eight second-half free throws over the final 90 seconds of the game to hold off the Bobcats and earn the 10-point win.
Peru State heated up to 60 percent from the floor in the second half and 50 percent from beyond the arc to make a run at Benedictine, as the Ravens hit 53 percent from the floor in the second half.
Six Ravens scored at least 9 points in the win with four finishing in double figures. Charlie Wallrapp led the Ravens with 14 points while Jonathan Anaekwe, Herb Khangura and Shawn Fleming Jr., each scored 10 points. Khangura narrowly missed his first double-double as a Ravens, pulling in a team-high nine rebounds.
Benedictine returns home Saturday for their lone HAAC game of the first semester as they host a 4 p.m. game against Avila University. Saturday marks the Ravens annual Toys For Tots game. Admission is free to both the men's game and women's game at 2 p.m. with the donation of an unopened toy at the entrance to the Ralph Nolan Gymnasium.