MOORHEAD, Minn. (1/18/17) --- Kingda Ka at Six Flags theme park in Jacobson, New Jersey is the biggest rollercoaster in the world peaking at 456 feet and dropping that same distance at 120 miles per hour.
Concordia's season is starting to rival the up-and-down giant as they beat league-leading Bethel 72-70 on Wednesday after losing to winless Maacalester by 15 points on Monday.
The win over the Royals came down to the final seconds of play with Cobber senior Dylan Alderman sinking a lay-up at the buzzer to provide the dramatic two-point win.
The end-game scenario played out after Alderman and BU junior Bridgeport Tusler exchanged triples in the final minute before the Royals wound up with the ball with 27.5 seconds left.
Tusler attempted to break Austin Nelson down from the left elbow of the lane but the senior from Moorhead tipped the shot. Zach Kinny snagged the board and raced up the court with 5-seconds left. He then found Alderman for the contested layup as time expired.
The victory moves Concordia over the .500 mark as they are now 8-7 overall and 5-5 in the MIAC. The Royals drop out of first in the MIAC and are now 11-4 in all games and 7-4 in league play.
The Cobbers led at the half 37-34 thanks to a 9-3 run over the final seven possessions. Nelson buried a 3-pointer and Austin Rund came off the bench to knock down a deep ball of his own.
Rund peeled out in transition after a BU turnover and managed to drop a roller in as time expired to give CC the three-point advantage at the break.
Bethel came out of the half on a 10-2 run that spanned the first four minutes of the period.
Center Austin Heins kept the Cobbers in it as he scored on three straight trips down the floor.
Rund hit another trifecta and Kevin Wolfe scored on an up-and-under before Nelson helped the Cobbers regain the lead with a 3-pointer at 57-56 with just over 10 minutes to play.
CC built a five-point lead with four minutes to play but costly turnovers on consecutive possessions led to a tie game at 67-67.
Alderman proceeded to trade "3-balls" with Tusler before Nelson's clutch defensive play led to the transition buzzer beater.
In a game that featured nine lead changes and six ties, the Cobbers got balanced scoring up and down the lineup. Wolfe paced Concordia by putting a career-high 14 points. The junior from Sartell, Minn. also hauled down six rebounds.
Including the game-winner, Alderman added 13 points while Heins and Rund chipped in with 11 apiece.
Concordia outshot the Royals 47.6% (30-of-63) to 42.2% (27-of-64) and outrebounded BU 43-34.
Despite 19 turnovers, the Cobbers got a season-high 31 points from their bench in the win.
CAREER DAYS: A trio of Concordia reserve players had career-highs in the point column on Wednesday. To go along with Wolfe's team-high 14 points, Rund's 11 points was a career-high and Collin Larson buried a pair of triples to give him a career-high six points.
THE DAILY DOUBLE: Heins grabbed a career-high 10 rebounds to complete his first career double-double. He is the first Cobber to accomplish the feat this season.
RUSSELL WESTBROOKESQUE – We'd like to eliminate the "esque" but Zach Kinny fell a couple stats short of a triple double. The Litchfield, Minn. product chipped in eight points, tied a career-high with nine rebounds and dished nine assists – including the game winning dime. The nine assists is one shy of his career high which he posted against Augsburg earlier in the year.
HELPER HERO: Kinny's nine assists pushes his season total to 86 on the season. He leads the MIAC in assists and assists per game (5.7). His assists-per-game total is in the Top 25 of Division III.
ROYAL WOES – Bethel has struggled inside the friendly confines of Memorial Auditorium. The Cobbers have beaten the Royals five straight times during the regular season inside "The Barn". The last loss to the Royals during the regular season came during the 2011-2012 season.
NERD STAT – Concordia led at the intermission for the eighth time this season after nabbing a 37-34 halftime advantage. The Cobbers are now 7-1 this season when they enter the locker room ahead after the first 20 minutes.
WHAT'S NEXT? CC's four-game home stand continues on Saturday as they play host to St. Mary's. SMU is 5-9/3-7 after dropping a 100-65 decision to St. Thomas on Wednesday.
CONCORDIA vs. BETHEL HIGHLIGHTS: