By Caleb Scott
BEREA — Senior Nate Burger (Dayton/Alter) and junior Ryan Bruns (Chickasaw/Marion Local) scored 27 and 23 points, respectively to help the Ohio Northern men's basketball team grab an 80-73 victory over No. 25-ranked Baldwin Wallace on Wednesday evening at Ursprung Gymnasium.
The Polar Bears move to 10-4 overall and 5-2 in the Ohio Athletic Conference, while the Yellow Jackets drop to 11-3, 5-2.
Burger recorded his 11th consecutive game with at least 20 points, while Bruns posted his ninth such game of the season.
Burger's 27 points were a game-high, while the senior grabbed a game-high seven rebounds and dished out a game-best four assists.
Senior Travis Feitshans (Arcanum/Franklin Monroe) scored a season-best 13 points for the Polar Bears and added five rebounds.
Northern jumped out to an 8-2 lead to open the contest as Burger hit a 3-pointer on the opening possession to spark the run.
With 10:14 remaining in the first half, freshman Brandon Waugh (Columbus/Northland) would drill a 3-pointer to push the Polar Bear lead to 22-10.
Baldwin Wallace would get as close as 33-27 in the first half, before Northern closed the half on a 11-4 run capped by a buzzer-beating layup from sophomore Austin Allemeier (Elida) to take a 44-31 lead into the intermission.
Northern kept its distance throughout the second half and a dunk from Bruns with 8:46 left in the contest gave ONU its largest lead of the evening at 60-45.
From there, BW would cut the deficit to four points on two occasions, but Burger would seal the victory in the final 22 seconds of the game, going a perfect 4-for-4 from the free throw line.
Northern shot 32-of-62 (51.6 percent) from the field, including 4-of-14 (28.6 percent) from 3-point range, while Baldwin Wallace was 23-of-57 (40.4 percent) from the field and 11-of-36 (30.6 percent) from the 3-point line.
ONU won the battle on the glass by a 37-31 margin.
The Polar Bears return home on Saturday afternoon as they welcome Muskingum to the ONU Sports Center for a 2 pm tipoff.