Runnin' Polar Bears at it again as Men's Basketball posts 103-94 victory over Wilmington

Runnin' Polar Bears at it again as Men's Basketball posts 103-94 victory over Wilmington

By Tim Glon

ADA — Sophomore Nate Burger and freshman Ryan Bruns led six Ohio Northern players in double figures in scoring with 16 points each in a 103-94 victory over Wilmington Wednesday night at the ONU Sports Center.

The Polar Bears improve to 9-11 overall and 6-7 in Ohio Athletic Conference play, while the Quakers fall to 3-15, 2-11.

It marks the first time in 45 years and the first time in ONU Sports Center history that Ohio Northern has posted back-to-back 100-point games at home.

The 1970-71 Runnin' Polar Bear squad coached by Larry Michael accomplished the feat with a 101-79 victory over Wayne State and a 118-91 victory over Rio Grande at old Taft Gym on ONU's campus.

Juniors Devon Allen and Konnor Baker added 15 points each, sophomore Joey DiOrio scored 13 points and junior Aron Thress added 12 points for ONU against the Quakers.

"We are playing very well on offense right now," ONU head coach Kevin Byrne said. "It's not like we are trying to go out and score 100 points each game, but we do like to get up and down the floor and run. We are shooting it well and when you run and shoot it you can score a lot of points."

Burger's 16-point effort was a career high, as was his seven rebounds.

Wilmington was led by Zach McCorkle with 22 points and seven rebounds.

Northern opened the game on a 12-4 run over the first 3:14 only to see Wilmington gain a brief 37-35 lead

ONU quickly answered with a 7-0 run and led 42-37 with three minutes to play in the half and took a 51-45 lead into intermission.

A layup by DiOrio at the 11:16 mark snapped a 65-all tie and gave ONU the lead for good at 67-65.

Two free throws by Burger capped a 9-2 run that gave Northern a 79-70 lead with 7:20 left.

A steal and layup by DiOrio gave the Polar Bears their biggest lead of the night at 90-77 with 4:36 remaining.

WC rallied to within 93-90 with 1:37 to play, but Ohio Northern went 10-for-10 from the foul line the rest of the way to ice the game.

The Polar Bears made 31-of-66 field goal attempts for 47.0 percent and were 11-of-25 from 3-point range for 44.0 percent.

But ONU won the game at the foul line, making 30-of-41 free throws compared to 19-of-22 for WC.

Wilmington made 33-of-61 field goal attempts for 54.1 percent and were 9-of-19 from beyond the 3-point arc for 47.4 percent.

Ohio Northern out-rebounded WC 40-31.

The Polar Bears will return to action on Saturday at No. 25-ranked Mount Union.