LOUISVILLE — Things got technical Saturday night as No. 1 ranked Bellarmine dispatched No. 12 Kentucky Wesleyan 78-61 in a battle of Great Lakes Valley Conference heavyweights.
A Knights Hall sellout crowd of about 2,450 saw the defending NCAA II champions respond to a pair of second-half technical fouls by putting the win away in their home finale.
A technical foul on Bellarmine Coach Scott Davenport with 16:18 left sent Anthony Young to the free-throw line. He made one of two, giving Wesleyan a 38-37 lead.
Bellarmine immediately went on a 12-2 run to take a 49-40 lead, and the Knights were never headed.
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The lead was 65-54 when Wesleyan's Brandon Johnson drove to the hoop. Johnson was called for a charge, though, and the basket waived off.
Panthers Coach Todd Lee was irate, drawing a technical.
Bellarmine's Braydon Hobbs made both free throws and, on the ensuing possession, Jeremy Kendle added two more.
Moments later, Jelani Johnson drained a three-pointer for a 72-54 lead with 6:27 left.
Game, set and match.
With the win, the Knights (23-2, 15-2 GLVC) clinched the top seed in the GLVC Tournament, which will be played at Springfield, Ill. Bellarmine wraps up the regular season Thursday with a trip to No. 15 Northern Kentucky.
Wesleyan (19-5, 11-6) will close at home against Southern Indiana, a team which beat Bellarmine 75-72 Thursday.
All five starters scored in double figures for the Knights, led by Kendle with 18. Luke Sprague added 16, Keisten Jones 15, Chris Dowe 11 and Hobbs 10.
Young led Wesleyan with 21 points. Cornbread Walker added 13.
Bellarmine led 32-30 at halftime, behind nine points from Chris Dowe and eight by Luke Sprague. Dowe also had five rebounds and three assists.
Anthony Young paced Wesleyan with 16 points and four rebounds, going 5-for-7 from the floor and 6-for-6 at the free-throw line.