WILMINGTON — The Wilmington College men’s basketball team took a 54-48 lead on Heidelberg University midway through the second half, but the Student Princes held the Fightin’ Quakers to three points over a 10-minute span to pull away and claim a 70-63 Ohio Athletic Conference victory at Fred Raizk Arena Saturday evening.
Wilmington finishes its regular season with a 3-9 record and earns the No. 7 seed for the OAC Championship tournament next weekend. The Quakers will travel to Tiffin to face Heidelberg for the third time in five days in a quarterfinal Tuesday evening.
Heidelberg is receiving votes in the most recent D3Hoops.com Top 25 poll.
Additionally, the game marked the final regular season home game for Jackson Todd, Brandon Cox and Trey Kline, who is graduating early.
The contest, despite the final score being very similar to the night before, did not begin the same way. Neither squad led by more than three points for the first 12 minutes until aTodd layup put Wilmington ahead 25-21. Heidelberg would tie the contest 33-33 four minutes later, but baskets from Bilal Sow and Todd gave the hosts a basket lead at the break.
The Quakers’ defense ramped up to begin the second half, holding the Student Princes scoreless for the first four minutes. A Todd three-pointer gave Wilmington a 45-35 advantage, and though the visitors got back within a basket, a Jeffery Mansfield layup followed by an Anthony Freeman triple pushed the Quaker ahead 54-48.
Then came the Student Prince run that gave Heidelberg the win, an 18-3 advantage over a 10-minute period.
Both teams shot well from the field with the hosts making 23-of-50 (46.0 percent) and the visitors connecting on 26-of-51 (51.0 percent). Both squads made eight triples while Heidelberg made one more free throw and a 32-27 rebounding edge.
Alex Arellano led all scorers for Heidelberg with 20 points while Dylan Woods added 11 points and eight rebounds.
Mansfield scored 19 points to lead Wilmington while Todd poured in a career-high 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting to go along with five rebounds and three assists.