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Mount Union Pulls Away Late for 84-74 Win Over Men's Basketball

Photo by Trent Brown
Photo by Trent Brown

ALLIANCE, Ohio - The Wilmington College men's basketball team led 66-62 with eight minutes to play, but the University of Mount Union went on a 13-2 run over five minutes to earn a 84-74 Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) win on Saturday.

Mount Union hit the game's first field goal, a three-pointer from Nathan Bower-Malone, but Wilmington answered with a 10-0 run that featured four different Quakers Colin Myers, Abdul Kanu, Jeffery Mansfield and Matt Smith - scoring a basket. The visitors would hold that lead for nearly eight minutes until a pair of Purple Raider free throws tied the game 24-24 with 7:16 remaining in the first half.

Three Wilmington free throws that followed, over the course of two possessions, put the Quakers back on top. Wilmington would surrender the lead just once more (30-29 at the 3:07 mark) in the first half, but took it back immediately on a Mansfield jumper. In total, Mount Union led for just 2:18 of the first 20 minutes and went into halftime trailing 37-35.

The first 12 minutes of the second half were played within a six-point window with the Quakers leading by as many as five, on multiple occasions, and the Purple Raiders by just a single point. Unfortunately for Wilmington, it went cold offensively over the final eight minutes that led to a Mount Union win.

The Quakers finished 28-of-64 (43.8 percent) from the field and made nine triples, on 26 shots, and nine free throws, on 17 attempts. The Purple Raiders, who came into the game as the OAC's top shooting team both from the field and beyond the arc, didn't disappoint in either department. Mount Union made half (26-of-52) of its field goal attempts and 44.0 percent (11-of-25) of its three-point attempts.

Wilmington tied its season high with 14 steals and forcing 23 turnovers. The Quakers couldn't overcome a 43-23 rebounding deficit, however.

Individually, Mansfield led all scorers, pouring in a career-high 29 points on 11-of-17 shooting to glo along with four rebounds, two assists and two steals. DaeShawn Jackson and Colin Myers also scored in double figures with 16 and 10 points respectively.

Collen Gurley led Mount Union with 26 points on 9-of-16 shooting to go along with seven rebounds and three assists. Bower-Malone also scored 18 points despite committing nine turnovers.

Wilmington (3-6, 2-1 OAC) closes out the 2019 calendar year at Olivet College (Michigan) on Wednesday.