KANSAS CITY, Mo. – For the second straight game, the Raven men's basketball team found themselves looking up at their opponent at the halftime break.
After trailing by nine at halftime, Benedictine (15-6, 8-3 HAAC) limited Avila (4-16, 2-9 HAAC) to just nine second-half field goals but couldn't finish off their comeback effort as the Eagles earned a 73-68 win.
Avila used a 51.7 percent shooting effort and went 6 of 11 from beyond the arc in the first half to build their lead over Benedictine.
In the second half, the Ravens turned up the defensive pressure, holding the Eagles to just 9 of 23 from the field and 2 of 8 from beyond the arc.
Avila did convert 8 of 12 from the free throw line in the second half which allowed them to hold off Benedictine.
Trailing by 14 points with 8:12 left in the game, the Ravens started their comeback bid.
With three minutes left, a basket by Steven O'Brien in the paint pulled the game into its third tie at 64 points.
Jonathan Anaekwe pushed the game back into its fourth tie less than a minute later but the Eagles would hold the Ravens scoreless from the floor over the final 2:07 as they connected on five free throws to hold off the Ravens.
The Ravens return home on Saturday for a 4 p.m. game against Central Methodist University. Saturday is Benedictine's annual Atchison Heroes Day at the Ralph Nolan Gymnasium.
Atchison area military, veterans and civil servants are invited to join the Ravens for the doubleheader. In addition to free admission to both games, a reception in their honor, all are invited to join the men's team on the floor during their pregame for a special recognition before tip-off.