Men's wrap: Keeping pace in the OAC

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A.J. Edwards scored 13 of his 21 points in the first half as Marietta jumped out to a huge lead on Mount Union.
Marietta athletics file photo

No. 11 Marietta held off No. 18 Mount Union, while No. 5 John Carroll remained unbeaten and atop the Ohio Athletic Conference race in two key results from Wednesday night's Division III men's basketball action.

The Pioneers roared out to 24-3 lead and were up by 33 at the half, shooting 9-for-18 from downtown and using a huge rebounding advantage to keep the Purple Raiders down. Marietta (14-2, 8-1) extended the lead to 35 early in the second half before Mount Union started to find its range, but the Purple Raiders (11-5, 7-2) got no closer than 12 points.

Marietta remained a game behind conference leader John Carroll in the OAC as David Linane scored a team-high 16 points and added seven assists for the Blue Streaks (16-0, 9-0) in a 102-89 win vs. archrival Baldwin Wallace (10-5, 5-3). Antonio Vuyancih added 14 points, while Danny Wallack and Ryan Farragher added 13 apiece.

Jordan Robinson scored a game-high 31 points and Juwan Henry added 30, but it wasn't quite enough as No. 2 Elmhurst held on at home to defeat North Park 91-88 in overtime. Erik Crittenden led the Bluejays (16-1, 6-0 CCIW) with 19, including a jumper with eight seconds left in regulation to force overtime. Elmhurst took a five-point lead on a 3-pointer by Pat Coleman with 4:02 left in the game before Robinson and Henry led the Vikings (11-6, 3-3) on an 11-2 run to take a four-point lead. Elmhurst jumped out to an early lead in overtime and kept the Vikings at bay.

Five Bullets scored in double figures and Gettysburg led from start to finish in a 73-57 Centennial Conference win vs. No. 13 Franklin & Marshall. The win moves Gettysburg into a tie for first in the conference with the Diplomats, with each sporting identical 13-3, 8-1 records. The Bullets were hot from the outside once again, shooting 12-for-25 from beyond the arc in the win. Pete Christ led Gettysbyrg with 15 points.

Chris Rodgers' floater with 0.4 seconds left lifted No. 14 WPI over Clark 67-66. Clark held a 66-63 lead with less than 15 seconds left. Instead of letting WPI get a look at a game-tying three, the Cougars fouled the Engineers' Sean Doncaster who made two free throws. Clark was fouled on its next possession, but missed both free throws, setting up Rodgers' last second heroics. WPI moves into a three-way tie for first, thanks to its win and MIT's 71-66 win at Babson.

Trine fought back from a 23-point deficit but was defeated by No. 21 Alma 96-91 in overtime. The Thunder overcame a double-digit deficit in the final 6:37 force the overtime period. After each team scored to open overtime, Alma scored the next seven points to pull away. Four straight points by Scott Nikodemski pushed the score to 90-83 with 26 seconds left. The Scots hit their last six free throws to seal the win.

Fourth-ranked Benedictine tied the program record for consecutive wins, moving to 17-0 with a 91-67 win vs. Dominican. Cortez Tillman scored a game-high 18 points and No. 6 St. Thomas ran its winning streak to 10 and opened a two-game lead at the halfway point of the 20-game MIAC race with a 75-66 win over second-place St. Olaf.

Hope led for the last 25:48 of the game, but the win was anything but easy as Adrian cut the Flying Dutchmen lead to one on two separate occasions in the final two and a half minutes before Ben Gardner made three of four free throws down the stretch to secure a 76-73 win.

No. 22 St. Norbert got off to a hot start and never trailed as the Green Knights defeated Carroll 82-58. It was the first conference loss for the Pioneers and just the second loss overall on the season. D.J. DeVaik scored 25 as St. Norbert used an 18-3 run to take control early.

Chris McCullough has been a role player for Scranton but his role got a lot larger on Wednesday as he hit the game-winning layup as time expired to give the Royals a 69-68 victory over Moravian. Scranton trailed by one with the ball and called timeout with nine seconds to play. After the inbounds pass, they looked to get the ball inside, but couldn't find an opening. The ball swung around to McCullough and he found an open driving line and went straight to the basket, putting up the layup just before the horn and tumbling through the floor as the ball took its own tumble through the net, setting off a wild celebration.

The ball is in Brian Kruger's hands and the light is on, but the official in the lower left-hand corner of the frame emphatically counted the bucket. Watch the video.

In what came down to a controversial final shot as time expired, Hunter Brian Kruger scored the game winner to score an 82-81 win over Staten Island, giving Hunter just its second win on the season. Without the benefits of a replay monitor, it didn't take long for the officials to decide that Kruger's shot was launched before time expired, leaving CSI stunned. Video would later reveal that time had expired before Kruger released the shot, but CSI also missed four crucial free throws with under a minute left that would have iced the game for the Dolphins (13-5, 6-3 CUNYAC).

In an intense battle for sole possession of first place in the NJAC, New Jersey City's Jalen Harris scored 17 of his game-high 19 points in the second half and Khalid Muhammad had back-to-back blocks to thwart the Scarlet Raiders in the final seconds as NJCU prevailed, 63-59. It's the Gothic Knights' first sweep of Rutgers-Newark since 2001-02. At 8-2 in the conference, NJCU is up one game on Rutgers-Newark, Ramapo and Stockton.

Led by Jaylon Bell's 27 points, St. Vincent defeated Thiel 85-81 to remain undefeated in Presidents' Athletic Conference play. The Bearcats improve to 13-3, 9-0, winning for the sixth time in a row after the Classic.