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Bears move up to No. 20

PIKEVILLE, Ky. – A pair of league wins and one over a Top 10 team was good for three spots for the University of Pikeville Bears.

Pikeville, 14-7 on the season, moved up to No. 20 in this week’s NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, released Monday evening by the national office in Kansas City. The move happened for the Bears on a week that saw five Top 10 teams change positions and 19 of the 25 spots altered from last week.

The Bears picked up a 67-56 win over Cumberlands Thursday night and 71-70 decision over No. 8 Lindsey Wilson on Saturday.

The Blue Raiders, despite an 0-2 week against Mid-South Conference competition, remained eighth this week. Georgetown – Pikeville’s opponent on Thursday night – also went 0-2 and fell from No. 5 to 12th this week.

Those are the MSC teams ahead of the Bears. Two others are getting votes, as St. Catharine is 30th this week while Campbellsville is the 35th team on the list.

The top of the poll remains the same, as Shorter (Ga.), the nation’s only unbeaten team, is still No. 1, while one-loss Robert Morris (Ill.) is still second. Southern Poly (Ga.), Oklahoma Baptist and Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) complete the Top Five.

Rogers State (Okla.), Azusa Pacific (Calif.), Lindsey Wilson, Martin Methodist (Tenn.) and Montana State-Northern round out the Top 10.

Pikeville stormed out to a 17-2 lead over Cumberlands on Thursday and never allowed the Patriots to get closer than eight in picking up the win. On Saturday, Mid-South Conference Player of the Week Andrew Young scored with 8.4 seconds left to lift the Bears to the win.

UPIKE has now won three straight and six of its last eight games. More importantly, the Bears are 5-4 in the league and are one game behind both Lindsey Wilson and Georgetown in a four-way logjam atop the standings.

While Lindsey is idle and St. Catharine, also 5-4, plays a game that doesn’t count in the league standings at WVU Tech on Thursday, the Bears have an opportunity to draw even with Georgetown in what would be a second-place tie ½ game behind Lindsey Wilson with a win on Thursday.

A loss would put the Bears in fourth place, ½ game behind St. Catharine. In any event, the ties for first and third will be broken on Thursday night.

The complete poll is as follows:

RANK LAST WEEK SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES) 2011 – 12 RECORD TOTAL POINTS
1 1 Shorter (Ga.) (12) 21-0 312
2 2 Robert Morris (Ill.) 21-1 302
3 5 Southern Poly (Ga.) 17-3 287
4 3 Oklahoma Baptist 18-3 282
5 7 Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) 17-3 277
6 6 Rogers State (Okla.) 16-4 249
7 16 Azusa Pacific (Calif.) 18-4 247
8 8 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) 15-6 235
9 9 Martin Methodist (Tenn.) 16-5 228
10 13 Montana State-Northern 20-3 214
11 15 Mountain State (W.Va.) 16-6 211
12 5 Georgetown (Ky.) 17-5 205
13 10 The Master's (Calif.) 15-6 202
14 11 Texas Wesleyan 15-4 185
15 14 Southern Nazarene (Okla.) 17-5 178
16 18 Concordia (Calif.) 17-4 156
17 17 Lee (Tenn.) 14-5 136
18 21 Columbia (Mo.) 18-5 125
19 20 Montana Western 18-5 120
20 23 PIKEVILLE (Ky.) 14-7 119
21 24 Tougaloo (Miss.) 15-5 110
22 12 Westmont (Calif.) 15-4 100
23 RV John Brown (Ark.) 17-5 97
24 22 MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) 16-7 91
25 19 Xavier (La.) 15-6 67

Others receiving votes: LSU Shreveport (La.) 53; Union (Tenn.) 46; Saint Xavier (Ill.) 37; Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.) 22; St. Catharine (Ky.) 20; Oklahoma Christian 12; Westminster (Utah) 11; Voorhees (S.C.) 9; Point Loma Nazarene (Calif.) 8; Campbellsville (Ky.) 4; Cal State San Marcos 3; Evangel (Mo.) 1; Science & Arts (Okla.) 1; Avila (Mo.) 1; Baker (Kan.) 1.


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