Men's Basketball posts dominating second half in 82-57 win over Muskingum

Men's Basketball posts dominating second half in 82-57 win over Muskingum

By: Andrew Korba

ADA -- Senior Branden Rushton scored a game-high 20 points and freshman Alex Radkiewicz added a career-high 12 points to lead the Ohio Northern men's basketball team to a 82-57 win over Muskingum on Saturday evening at the ONU Sports Center.

The Polar Bears are now 3-4 on the season and 1-2 in OAC play, while the Fighting Muskies fall to 3-3, 0-3.

The scored was knotted at 35-35 at halftime, but ONU outscored Muskingum 47-22 in the second half.

Rushton finished 9-of-14 from the field, while Radkiewicz was a perfect 6-of-6 in shooting and also pulled down a career best seven rebounds.

Junior Lucas Pennington scored 13 points for the Polar Bears and junior Isaiah Roux finished with 10 points, six assists and four rebounds.

The Fighting Muskies opened up a 19-13 lead with just under 10 minutes to play in the first half.

But Northern responded with a 7-0 run, capped off by a Rushton layup, to take the lead back at 20-19 with 8:05 left in the first half.

The Fighting Muskies would open up a 33-28 lead with 1:51 left in the half, but Northern came back with a 7-2 run, with senior Jared Horstman scoring just before the buzzer, to tie the game at the break.

The Polar Bears used an early 7-0 run in the second half to build a 44-37 lead.

Muskingum would score a basket to cut the ONU lead to 50-46 with 14:08 to play.

But Northern would dominate from then on, outscoring the Fighting Muskies 32-11 the rest of the game.

"I thought we played solid in every aspect today," said head coach Kevin Byrne. "We were really good in transition on offense. Our guys executed what they needed to do and found the open player for the easy basket."

The Polar Bears were 32-of-64 (50.0 percent) from the field, while Muskingum was 17-of-47 (36.2 percent).

Northern held a 43-29 advantage on the glass, including a 14-5 margin in offensive rebounds.

"We played our most complete game on defense," added Byrne. "Our goal was to force them into one shot and get the rebound. We were able to do just that and get the ball moving towards the offensive end."

Ohio Northern will return to action on Wednesday, when it travels to take on Otterbein at 7:30 pm.