The best shooting team in the NAIA hit a dry hole Thursday night.


The best shooting team in the NAIA hit a dry hole Thursday night.
Ninth-ranked Oklahoma Baptist hit just 43.1 percent of its field goals and dropped an 82-76 decision to unranked Mid-America Christian at the Noble Complex.
Mid-America Christian, 0-15 previously against OBU, led by as many as 21 points before warding off a desperation OBU rally down the stretch.
OBU, 20-6 overall, still retained first place in the Sooner Athletic Conference at 14-4 when Southern Nazarene fell 73-60 at Rogers State. That left SNU in second place at 14-5.
The Bison entered Thursday ranked No. 1 in field-goal percentage (52.2) and 3-point field-goal percentage (43.3) in the NAIA.
But that phase went awry against the Evangels as OBU was 25-of-58 in total field goals, including a woeful 14.3 percent (2-of-14) from 3-point range.
“I didn’t think we got a lot of quality shots,” OBU head coach Doug Tolin said. “We didn’t move the ball like we should have. When you expend so much energy coming from that far behind, you have to be perfect at the end. We didn’t make them earn hard baskets at the end.”
The hosts never led and trailed 41-28 at the half after missing all seven of their 3-point shots. OBU was 33.3 percent (8-of-24) overall from the field in the first 20 minutes.
Mid-America Christian, which entered the night in ninth place in the SAC, went to 8-11. The Evangels are 12-13 overall.
OBU posted a 94-78 win over the Evangels in a Jan. 22 game at Mid-America Christian.
The visitors held a 20-point (57-37) advantage with 14:14 remaining but scored on just one of their next 11 possessions — turning the ball over six times in the process — as OBU surged within 60-56 with 7:50 to play.
That four-point spread was as close as OBU got as the Evangels scored on seven of eight possessions to regain a 10-point lead at the 2:34 mark.
OBU had one last challenge, cutting the margin to 78-74 with 22 seconds left on a Tim Bowman field goal.
Mid-America Christian then iced the game with two free throws apiece by Camilo Valencia and Nathan Pratt.
OBU’s Kevin Swinton, after picking up three first-half fouls, scored 19 second-half points to finish as the game’s leading scorer with 28.
Joining Swinton in double figures for the Bison were Tim Bowman with 16 and Maurice Foster with 13.
OBU posted only four assists — none in the opening half.
Foster was also the game’s leading rebounder with 17, 10 coming on the defensive end. Swinton collared 10. Foster also netted five steals.
Pratt led MACU with 22 points as the Evangels canned 50.8 percent (30-of-59) of their field goals. Mid-America Christian was 42.9 percent (6-of-14) from beyond the 3-point line.
OBU has lost back-to-back games for the first time since the 2007-08 season.
The Bison will be home again Saturday night opposite Oklahoma City University. The tipoff is set for 8.