By Tim Glon
ADA — Junior Ryan Bruns (Chickasaw/Marion Local) had his eighth double-double of the season with game-highs of 29 points and 11 rebounds, but the Ohio Northern men's basketball team fell 84-80 to Heidelberg on Wednesday night at the ONU Sports Center.
The Polar Bears (11-5 overall) finish the first half of their double round-robin Ohio Athletic Conference schedule in fourth place with a 6-3 record.
The Student Princes improve to 7-9, 3-6.
Senior Nate Burger (Dayton/Alter) added 20 points and eight rebounds, senior Travis Feitshans (Arcanum/Franklin Monroe) added 15 points and senior Joey DiOrio (Columbus/Watterson) chipped in 12 points for Ohio Northern.
Heidelberg was led by Kiere Bennie with 17, Chris Moxley with 15 and Myron Prewitt with 13 points.
The Polar Bears got off to a quick start, leading 20-10 7:30 into the contest, but HU turned up its intensity on the defensive end and climbed back to tie the game at 36-all.
ONU led 43-40 at intermission.
Ohio Northern led 55-47 on a layup by Bruns with 4:06 gone in the second half, but again the Student Princes rallied and took a 65-63 lead with 9:50 to play.
A layup by Bruns tied the game at 73-all with 3:55 to go, but Bennie and Prewitt each hit baskets to give HU a 77-73 lead with 3:16 to go.
A 3-point play by Feitshans made it 77-76 at the 2:45 mark, a basket by Bruns made it 79-78 with 1:05 to go and a basket by Burger got ONU within 81-80 with 34 seconds left in the game.
Prewitt hit a huge three with nine seconds left in the game to extend the HU lead to 84-80 and seal the game for Heidelberg.
"We had too many empty possessions offensively and they then got easy buckets," ONU head coach Rich Bensman said. "We have to do little things better defensively. We missed a few block outs and they hit some big threes. We will regroup and be ready to play on Saturday."
Ohio Northern made 32-of-75 field goal attempts for 42.7 percent and were 8-of 25 from 3-point range for 32.0 percent. Heidelberg was 26-of-63 from the field for 41.3 percent and was 9-of-27 from three for 33.3 percent.
HU out-rebounded ONU 43-37, led by 16 offensive rebounds to 10 for the hosts.
The Polar Bears will hit the road for their next two games with a tilt at Mount Union on Saturday and a game at Wilmington next Wednesday.