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Bears move to No. 3 in NAIA Div. I poll

PIKEVILLE, Ky. – Saturday’s three-point loss to Georgetown College cost the University of Pikeville only one spot in this week’s national ratings.

The Bears, 17-2 overall and 8-1 in the Mid-South Conference, are No. 3 this week in the fifth regular season edition of the 2012 - 13 NAIA Division I Men's Basketball Coaches' Top 25 Poll, announced Tuesday by the national office in Kansas City.

Pikeville won its 11th straight game on Thursday night when it knocked off St. Catharine College 79-64, but two days later saw the stretch come to an end with an 80-77 loss to Georgetown.

The Mid-South is one of two leagues in the country with four teams in this week’s ratings. Pikeville is followed closely by Lindsey Wilson College. Coach Paul Peck’s Blue Raiders, 18-2 overall, moved up one place to No. 7 this week.

Shawnee State, 11-7 overall but 7-3 in the league, is ranked in the Div. I poll for the first time ever after wins over Wilberforce (Ohio) and Bluefield last week gave it six wins in its last seven outings. The Bears are 24th.

Cumberlands remains in the poll despite having lost four straight. At 15-5 overall, the Patriots are No. 25; two weeks ago, the Patriots came to Pikeville atop the poll.

Georgetown’s win over Pikeville allowed it to return to the “receiving votes” column. The Tigers are 14-4 overall, 6-4 in the league.

Columbia (Mo.), the nation’s only unbeaten team at 20-0, remains atop the poll with all 11 first-place votes. Lee (Tenn.) bolted up four places to No. 2. Pikeville is followed by John Brown (Ark.) and Lewis-Clark State (Idaho), who are tied for fourth. John Brown was 10th last week.

In the second five, Westmont (Calif.) and Lindsey Wilson are followed by William Carey (Miss.), Cal State-San Marcos and Oklahoma Baptist.

Pikeville will return to the court with a pair of road games this week. The Bears will travel to Lebanon, Tenn., on Thursday for a 9 p.m. EDT opening tip. On Saturday, they head to Williamsburg for a rematch with Cumberlands at 4 p.m.

Record Adjusted: Pikeville’s overall record was adjusted by one game on Tuesday with the removal of the Oct. 30 contest against Knoxville College from the regular-season schedule. Because Knoxville is not yet an accredited institution, its games are not countable contests for NAIA schools. It will now be considered an exhibition game.

Two other Mid-South Conference schools, St. Catharine and Georgetown, have made similar moves to correct the issue.

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