ALLIANCE – The Wilmington College men’s basketball team had its three-game winning streak end Saturday against Mount Union, 79-73, in Ohio Athletic Conference action.
WC made 33 of 36 free throws but trailed in the rebounding category, 44-25.
Mount Union scored the first eight points of the game forcing Wilmington to play catchup early, but the Quakers battled back to tie the game 18-18 on a four-point play from Christian Jones at the 10:35 mark.
The Purple Raiders, who defeated the Quakers 76-73 at Hermann Court on Dec. 2, responded with a 17-9 run capped by a layup by Miles Griffin over the next seven minutes.
Trailing 35-27, Will Patrick and D.J. Iles hit two free throws each for WC. Christian Jones then went to the free throw line on three consecutive possessions and made five free throws to get the visitors within 39-36. Nathan Bower-Malone ended the half with a basket to put the hosts ahead 41-36 at the break.
Wilmington pulled within 43-41 on a three-pointer from Nathan Scott early in the second half. Mount Union went back on top by 12 before the Quakers rallied to within three at the 7:32 mark of the second half on two free throws from Kevin Lewis.
But the Purple Raiders hit free throws down the stretch to seal the win.
“We did not play Wilmington basketball today,” WC head coach K.C. Hunt said. “Inconsistent effort along with poor shooting will get you a loss most nights in this league and that’s what happened tonight.”
The Quakers were 16-of-54 (29.6 percent) from the field compared to 28-of-56 (50 percent) for the Purple Raiders.
Individually, Patrick led the Quakers with 19 points including 9-of-9 from the free throw line while Christian Jones scored 18 points. Russell and Iles also scored in double figures while Kevin Lewis had eight points and dished out three assists.