YORK - York College survived a late rally by upset minded Bethany College to win 99-97 in the semifinal of the KCAC tournament. The Swedes made it a game as they were behind by 16 just one minute into the second half, before crawling back in it to take the lead with just under five minutes remaining in the game. Bethany had the opportunity to knock off the Panthers at home with a last second shot, but Johnny Cooksey (SR/Shreveport, La) stole the ball and ran out the clock to preserve the win and keep the Panthers season alive.

In the first half it was a very back-and-forth game as the game tied for the ninth time at 38-38 with just under seven minutes left in the first half. Over the final six and a half minutes the Panthers closed out the half on a 22-7 run for the 15 point halftime lead 60-45.

York stayed strong for the first eight minutes of the second half as they maintained their double digit lead. However, a hot shooting Swedes team came storming back and went on a 15-6 run to pull within one with just over five minutes to go in the game. During a six minute stretch the Swedes converted on all but one possession as they closed on their deficit. Over the final five minutes of the game neither team led by more than two points. 

With 30 seconds remaining the Panthers were down 96-97 and Cameron Coleman (SR/Allen, Texas) at the line. He missed the front end of a 1-and-1. York was able to maintain possession and Coleman put the Panthers up with a two point basket 98-97. With 12 seconds remaining Tyler Larkin of Bethany dribbles the ball up the court and drives the lane before meeting Coleman. Coleman strips the ball from Larkin and is immediately fouled with four seconds left. Coleman went to the foul line looking to put the Panthers up by three, but missed the front end of the double bonus. He made the second one to put the Panthers up 99-97 with four seconds remaining. The Swedes had the final chance once again but this time it was Joey Habtermariam who was stripped by Johnny Cooksey to seal the victory for the Panthers.

Cameron Coleman led all scorers with 26 points, and he also grabbed 10 rebounds for the Panthers. Michael Johnson (JR/Orlando, Fla) added 16 points and Cooksey and Keith Mack (JR/Chicago, Ill) each had 12. Drelan Tripplett (JR/Oklahoma City, Okla) added 13 of his own to round out the five Panthers to score in double figures. 

Bethany shot an astounding 63% from the floor but the Panthers were able to stay in the game with rebounding. York had 16 offensive rebounds and scored 21 points with those opportunities. The bench of York outscored the Swedes 44-27. 

With the win the Panthers will host No. 6 seed Ottawa University on Saturday afternoon. Ottawa upset University of Saint Mary 81-79 to stay alive in the KCAC tournament.

York improves to 22-9 on the season and is currently on a nine game win streak. Saturday's quarterfinal game is set for a 2 p.m. tip in the Freeman Center Gymnasium on the York College campus.