MARIETTA, Ohio – Marietta College, ranked No. 6 in the most recent D3hoops.com Top 15 Poll, had too much offensive firepower for the Wilmington College men's basketball team to handle as the Pioneers won 102-65 over the Fightin' Quakers in an Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) Tournament semifinal at Ban Johnson Arena on Thursday evening.
The win vaults Marietta (11-1) to the OAC Tournament championship game and ends Wilmington's season (4-10).
The Pioneers scored on their first five possessions forcing Wilmington Head Coach K.C. Hunt to call timeout trailing 11-5 three minutes in. The Quakers responded with a triple from Jackson Todd and four straight points from Jeffery Mansfield to get within a single point (13-12) at the 15:04 mark.
The visitors stayed within a possession for the next several minutes as an Andrew Clark took a pass from Matt Smith and made a layup with 11:37 left to make the score 23-21. The Quakers couldn't keep up the Pioneers' scoring pace, however, as a 17-4 run over the next four minutes pushed Marietta ahead 40-25. Two free throws from Mansfield and a basket from Bilal Sow stemmed the bleeding, but the Pioneers connected on triples on three of their next four possessions to build a 22-point advantage with four minutes to play in the first half.
Marietta, which connected on 9-of-15 triples to go along with 10 offensive rebounds, took a 57-37 advantage into halftime.
Wilmington had old-fashioned, three-point plays from both Jeffery Mansfield and Jackson Todd on consecutive possessions, but those would be the Quakers' only points for the first nine minutes. During that stretch, Marietta had scored 20 points to put the game away.
The Pioneers shot the ball well, finishing 28-of-72 (52.8 percent) to go along with a 14-of-28 (50.0 percent) performance from three-point range. The Quakers finished 23-of-64 (35.9 percent) from the field, 7-of-32 (21.9 percent) from deep and 15-of-16 (93.8 percent) from the charity stripe. Marietta held a 48-30 rebounding edge.
Marietta had a balanced scoring attack as six Pioneers – Mason Lydic, Lukas Isaly, Tim Kreeger, Jac Alexander, Sahmi Willoughby and Cooper Parrott – all scored between 10-13 points.
Mansfield led Wilmington with 14 points in defeat to go along with four rebounds, four assists and three steals. Todd Larkin also scored in double figures with a career-high 12 points.