Champion Christian College won on Friday and lost on Saturday, both games at home, but preserved the potential to end the fall semester with a winning record for the first time in school history.
The Tigers improved to 3-2 with a 108-102 double-overtime win on Tuesday with the first intracity intercollegiate contest in Hot Springs. They moved to 4-2 on Friday with a 94-70 win against visiting Welch College.
"We came out flat after Tuesday's double overtime game, giving up 39 points and committing 10 turnovers in the first half," said Champion head coach Jesse Byrd.
The Tigers still led 45-39 at the break. They outscored Welch 49-31 in the second half to pull away.
Senior Cody Connor led all scorers with 31 points on 11-for-17 shooting, 64 percent. He also shot 7-for-8 at the free throw line and grabbed seven rebounds.
Fellow senior Pargo Williams notched 21 points, four rebounds and four assists. He shot 3-for-6 from 3-point range and 9-for-14, 64 percent, overall.
Champion shot 36-for-61, 59 percent, overall and 7-for-16, 43 percent, from distance. J.T. Jones led Welch with 15 points.
"In the second half, our bench did a great job staying in the game and motivating our guys to get stops and lock in defensively, forcing Welch into 17 second-half turnovers," Byrd said.
Sophomore Austin Pike, from Monette, finished 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists. Freshman Anton Pirtle, from Memphis, Tenn., added eight points and seven rebounds. Sophomore Trevon Reed, from Blevins, finished with six points, nine assists, five rebounds and five steals.
The Tigers were back at home on Saturday to face Arkansas State University Mid-South from West Memphis. The Greyhounds took a 76-64 win on the road to make the Tigers 4-3.
"We battled hard against a really tough team, especially playing the second night of a back to back, but we ran out of gas down the stretch," Byrd said.
Mid-South led 39-34 at halftime and outscored Champion 37-30 in the second half. K.J. Patrick, of Russellville, led all scorers with 15 points. Montee Randle, of Forrest City, added 14 points.
Williams led Champion with 14 points on 6-for-13 shooting, including 2-for-2 from 3-point range. Connor, Pike, Pirtle and Reed had 10 points apiece. Connor and Pike also led the team with seven rebounds each.
Champion shot 36 percent overall, 24-for-66. The Tigers shot best from distance, making 6 of 15 with two each from Pike, Reed and Williams.
"Defensively this was probably our best game," Byrd said. "We rotated and communicated really well, but we gave up some key offensive rebounds and committed some bad turnovers in crunch time that really cost us. Hats off to them for forcing us into bad spots."
The Tigers will try to keep their winning record intact on Thursday in a road game against Baptist Bible College in Springfield, Mo. Their next game is scheduled to be a rematch with the NPC Nighthawks on Jan. 2 at Bank of the Ozarks Arena.Sports on 12/04/2017
Print Headline: Champion splits weekend home tilts