College men’s basketball: 1st-place MC men down Polar Bears

ADA – Marietta College scored the first five points of the game and never trailed as the Pioneers defeated Ohio Northern University 69-60 Saturday in men’s basketball action. The win kept Marietta (14-5 overall, 10-2 OAC) tied for first place in the Ohio Athletic Conference with Capital University.

Ohio Northern (8-11, 4-8 OAC) was ice cold from the floor in the first half allowing the Pioneers to take a 27-15 lead into halftime. The Polar Bears shot just 24 percent (6-of-25) including 0-for-10 from three-point range in the half.

The Pioneers’ lead stayed in double figures for most of the second half. Marietta pushed the lead to 17 points, 55-27, on a three-pointer from A.J. Ireland with 12:40 left in the game.

The Polar Bears gradually chipped away at the lead and got within five points, 63-58, on a pair of free throws from sophomore Isaiah Roux with 1:07 left on the clock. Ohio Northern was forced to foul down the stretch and the Pioneers hit 6-of-8 free throws to secure the win.

J.J. Martin led all scorers with 17 points and grabbed a game-high seven rebounds. Jacob Owens and Tyler Hammond each chipped in with 10 points. Scott Kimmey grabbed seven rebounds.

Jared Horstman was one of three Polar Bears in double figures.

Horstman scored 13 points and pulled down seven rebounds. Taylor Kuhlman notched 12 points, while Brandon Rushton had 10 points.

MC finished the game 23-of-47 (48.9 percent) from the floor, 8-of-17 (47.1 percent) behind the arc and 15-of-23 (65.2 percent) at the line. Ohio Northern shot 37.7 percent (20-of-53) from the floor, 21.1 percent (4-of-19) from three-point range and 72.7 percent (16-of-22) at the line.

Marietta grabbed 36 rebounds to 29 for the Polar Bears. The Pioneers turned the ball over 13 times, while Ohio Northern committed nine turnovers.

Marietta is scheduled to return home for four straight OAC games starting with rival Muskingum University at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.