DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Ricky Johnson netted a career-high 28 points, but Bethune-Cookman dropped a 77-72 loss to cross county rival Stetson Tuesday in Moore Gymnasium.
Johnson scored 20 in the first half as the Wildcats (7-16) jumped out to an early leads of 13-2 and 24-11 before settling for a 42-36 halftime advantage.
Kentwan Smith scored 18 of his team-high 20 points for Stetson, who used a 12-0 run and took a 54-50 lead on a Smith dunk with 9:41 to play.
Stetson (8-15) pushed the lead to 62-55 with 6:34 to play, but the Wildcats scored seven straight points to knot the game at 62 on a Quintin Brewer lay-up with 4:36 to play.
The Hatters built their lead back up to six before Troy Simmons hit two free throws to close it to 71-69 with 38 seconds to play and Travis Elliott made a lay-up to cut it to 74-72 with 20 seconds left.
After a Stetson free throw made it a three-point game, Bethune-Cookman had two chances to tie but couldn’t capitalize.
Brewer had a double-double of 17 points and 13 rebound for the Wildcats, who have now lost five straight at home. Elliott and Mikel Trapp added nine each.