By Tim Glon
CHICAGO, Ill. — Sophomore Lucas Pennington scored a career-high 23 points to lead the Ohio Northern men's basketball team in a 79-75 non-conference loss at North Park (Ill.) on Saturday.
The Polar Bears fall to 4-3, while the Vikings improve to 2-3.
North Park's Mark Holmes poured in a game-high 36 points to lead all scorers.
Northern used an 11-2 run late in the first half to turn a 31-31 tie into a 42-33 lead with 1:20 left before intermission.
ONU took a 45-36 lead into halftime.
North Park rallied with an 11-0 run to take a 57-55 lead with 8:38 left in the game.
The hosts scored eight straight points over a 2:42 span late in the game to break a 63-all tie and take a 71-63 lead with just 1:09 left to play.
The Vikings then made 8 of 10 free throws in the final 23 seconds to put the game away.
Rushton made a pair of layups and Pennington nailed a 3-pointer with four seconds left to pull ONU within 76-75.
Northern made 29 of 57 field goal attempts for 50.9 percent and were 6 of 17 from 3-point range for 35.3 percent, while North Park made 28 of 49 field goal attempts for 57.1 percent and were a hot 6 of 11 from beyond the arc for 54.5 percent.
The Vikings won the rebounding battle 31-24.
The Polar Bears will return to action Wednesday night and will begin the Ohio Athletic Conference portion of their schedule with a 7:30 pm contest at Baldwin Wallace.