After a rocky beginning that saw the team go 3-17, the group collected their first CSAC triumph of the year during a double-digit win over Keystone College in mid-February and followed up with an 11-point victory over Baptist Bible College. Playing as the second seed in the NCCAA East Region Tournament, the basketball team skirted past the Defenders for the second time in five days before boxing with Valley Forge Christian College in the East Region Championship. PBU knocked off the top-seeded Patriots with a one-point triumph at Valley Forge. As the sixth seed in the NCCAA National Tournament, the team couldn’t quite pull off the upset against third-seeded Ohio Christian University in the opening round, falling 62-55 to end their quest for the program’s first ever National Championship.
Despite losing four of five starters from last year’s group, the team doubled their win total by kicking off the season with a 2-1 mark. PBU’s early success didn’t hold up; it was nearly two months before the team managed another win. Perhaps no win proved more significant than PBU’s landmark triumph over CSAC opponent Rosemont College in late January. The team’s 61-49 victory over the Ramblers snapped the squad’s midseason losing streak and signaled the program’s first-ever victory against a conference foe. Riding the momentum of success, the Crimson Eagles went on to claim four additional CSAC victories, sweeping both Rosemont and heated rival Baptist Bible College in the process.
The team was dominant throughout a season that saw them sprint to their fourth consecutive 20-win campaign. Sparring with nationally ranked opponents 13 times throughout the season, the volleyball team finished 7-6 against their heavily touted counterparts. Thanks to PBU’s success against this field, the Crimson Eagles achieved their highest ranking ever in the national polls, tabbed fourth across the country by season’s end. Having never advanced out of the second round of the NECVA Championship Tournament, PBU jostled their way into the title bout. Facing Nazareth College in the NECVA Championship, the Crimson Eagles’ dream of the program’s first-ever title was halted as the group lost to the Golden-Flyers.
Following a semi-respectable 3-3 mark during the group’s season opening campaign in Myrtle Beach, the team hit a rough patch with eight defeats over PBU’s next nine games. PBU reversed their fortune by rolling out six triumphs over their next eight outings. The team’s struggles at the plate officially in the rearview mirror, PBU logged double-digit runs during five of the aforementioned victories, highlighted by a 38-run outburst during a double-header with Rosemont College. Needing wins in order to lock up a postseason bid, the Crimson Eagles dropped their final six games, finishing two spots out of the CSAC tournament.
It took only two games for the team to confirm that they wouldn’t fall victim to back-to-back winless seasons. PBU upended Johnson Bible College 7-4 in mid-March, erasing a streak of 31 straight losses. Midway through the year PBU’s offense all but disappeared. In a six-game span the group logged just three runs, but the Crimson Eagles followed with their most productive stretch of the season. The team logged 42 runs over the next six games. The team produced their most dominant performance of the year in the opening round of the NCCAA East Region playoffs. Behind Shawn Bramble’s no-hitter, PBU thumped Valley Forge Christian College 18-0 in the semi-finals before bowing out to Lancaster Bible College, 7-6, to close out the season.
Losing two of their top three golfers to injury for the majority of the season, the Crimson Eagles struggled to compete at the high apex the group has become accustomed to in recent years. The golf squad demonstrated commendable resiliency despite adversity. The Crimson Eagles averaged a collective score of 343 for the season, a mark good enough to rank second all-time in program history, trailing only last year’s count of 330. Competing with only four healthy golfers during the CSAC championship, PBU managed a respectable fourth place finish across the conference to conclude the year.
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