By Tim Glon
TIFFIN — The Ohio Northern men's basketball team grabbed 21 offensive rebounds and held off a late charge to win 74-67 at Heidelberg on Wednesday evening at Seiberling Gymnasium.
The Polar Bears improve to 16-6 overall and remain in the hunt for an Ohio Athletic Conference regular season title with an 11-4 record, while the Student Princes move to 9-13, 5-10.
Junior Ryan Bruns (Chickasaw/Marion Local) picked up his 10th double-double of the season and the 18th of his career with 19 points and 15 rebounds.
Senior Nate Burger (Dayton/Alter) scored 12 points and sophomore Austin Allemeier (Elida) scored 11 points for ONU. Seven different Polar Bears had at least one offensive rebound, led by senior Travis Feitshans (Arcanum/Franklin Monroe) with four.
Chris Moxley led Heidelberg with 19 points.
"We did a great job on the boards tonight and we thought that would be an important key to our success," ONU head coach Rich Bensman said. "We emphasized that all week and it paid off. Heidelberg is a good team and they made some runs, like we knew they would. Any road win in the OAC is a good win and this certainly was a good win."
The Polar Bears took advantage of early foul trouble of Heidelberg's big men in the first half to build a 41-32 lead at intermission. ONU held a 26-14 rebounding advantage, including 11 offensive boards, in the first half as the Student Princes two big men played a combined four minutes.
Northern used an 11-2 run to stretch the lead to 37-26 with four minutes left in the first half.
ONU led 54-39 early in the second half when HU went on a 9-0 run to get within 54-48 with 11:56 to go.
A bucket by Bruns with 2:36 to play gave ONU a 69-60 lead.
But the Student Princes knocked down four consecutive free throws to get within 69-64 with 2:00 to play.
Heidelberg appeared to have a transition and-one with 1:38 to go, but Feitshans took a charge to wipe out the basket and keep the lead at five.
Bruns then followed with a layup and it was 71-64 with 1:10 left and a layup by Burger with 31 seconds to go made it 73-64 and iced the game for the Polar Bears.
Ohio Northern was 26-of-71 from the floor for 36.6 percent and made 4-of-16 3-pointers for 25.0 percent, while Heidelberg was 27-of-60 for 45.0 percent and was 3-of-14 from three for 21.4 percent.
ONU won the battle on the glass 50-34.
The Polar Bears return to action on Saturday afternoon evening as they host league-leading and No. 24-ranked John Carroll at 2 pm at the ONU Sports Center.