By Tim Glon
ADA — Junior Ryan Bruns (Chickasaw/Marion Local) had career-highs of 41 points and 17 rebounds to lead the Ohio Northern men's basketball team to an 108-87 victory over Muskingum on Saturday night at the ONU Sports Center.
The Polar Bears (11-4 overall, 6-2 Ohio Athletic Conference) also got 29 points and eight assists from senior Nate Burger (Dayton/Alter) in the victory.
Both men were efficient, as Bruns was an impressive 18-of-22 from the floor and Burger needed just 16 shots to get his 29 points.
"Offensively, we were really, really good tonight," ONU head coach Rich Bensman said. "Ryan Bruns was a man tonight. He was terrific on both ends of the floor. Muskingum had no answer for him. Even though we gave up 87, I thought we were pretty good on the defensive end, too."
Senior Travis Feitshans (Arcanum/Franklin Monroe) also had a career night for Ohio Northern with 11 points, nine rebounds and a career-high nine assists. He finished the game just one rebound and one assists from posting just the second triple-double in ONU men's basketball history.
The Muskies (6-9, 4-4) were led by Marcus Dempsey with 40 points.
Sophomore Austin Allemeier (Elida) scored a career-high 13 points while guarding Muskingum's Dempsey all night.
"I thought Travis (Feitshans) was great and I thought Austin (Allemeier) did a very good job of making Dempsey take tough shots all night," Bensman said. " I know Dempsey scored 40, but he's a great player and we made him work very hard to get his points."
Northern shot a blistering 42-of-69 (60.9 percent) from the field and were 18-of-23 from the foul line for 78.3 percent., while Muskingum was 23-of-57 (40.4 percent) from the field and 11-of-36 (30.6 percent) from the 3-point line.
ONU won the battle on the glass by an impressive 51-23 margin.
Senior Joey DiOrio (Columbus/Watterson) scored six points and tied his career high with 10 rebounds for the Polar Bears.
Northern led throughout the contest, as Bruns set the tone for the game with a layup just 13 seconds into the contest.
The Polar Bears led 11-2, 19-6 and 30-13 before the Muskies caught fire on offense.
A basket by Dempsey got MU within 40-33 with 4:10 left in the half, but ONU took a 52-40 lead into the locker room at intermission.
The lead bounced between eight and 16 points for most of the second half until a layup by Bruns gave ONU a 94-72 lead with 7:00 to play.
The Muskies cut the lead in half at 98-87 with 3:33 left, but ONU would score the game's final 10 points to finish the victory.
The game was moved to 6 pm after a winter storm hit the area on Friday.
The Polar Bears return home on Wednesday evening in a 7 pm contest with Heidelberg at the ONU Sports Center.