OCU Loses Hard Fought Battle at NCAA Cedarville

CEDARVILLE, OH - Ohio Christian headed west to take on NCAA affiliate, Cedarville University, on Saturday afternoon and gave the host Yellow Jackets a hard fought battle for 32 minutes.  The Blazers put up a valiant effort and trailed 52-51 with just eight minutes left in the game.  OCU left it all out on the floor before succombing in the final minutes to a very talented Cedarville squad 73-56.

OCU started the game strong behind the hot shooting of sophomore guard Wesley Russell and sophomore forward Evan Mills.  The Blazers battled neck and neck with their NCAA Division II opponents as both teams exchanged baskets and the lead changed hands five times in the first half.  Cedarville took the lead briefly with 7 minutes remaining in the first half before Wesley Russell responded with back to back three pointers to put the Blazers back out in front.  OCU headed into halftime trailing Cedarville 32-31.

Evin Bartlett hit a pull up jumper early on in the 2nd half to give the Trailblazers the lead at 35-34.  The lead would go on to change hands seven more times in the second half as both teams continued to battle.  With the score 52-51, Cedarville went to their phenom forward Zimmy Nwogbo down the stretch and he did not let them down.  He led Cedarville with 19 points on 9 of 12 shooting while grabbing a game high 11 boards to help secure the win.

OCU was led by Wesley Russell who scored a game high 22 points on 8 of 13 shooting.  Russell added 8 boards and 4 assists for the Blazers.  Evan Mills had a breakout performance as he tallied 14 points and 8 rebounds in the contest.  James Nelson and Trey Vaughan added 5 points each and Treyvon Crater grabbed 5 boards for the Trailblazers.

Cedarville won the rebounding battle 37-36 with OCU grabbing 13 offensive rebounds.  OCU shot a 34.5% from the field compared to 49.1% for Cedarville.  

OCU is now 5-4 on the season and is back in action on Thursday when they host USCAA affiliate, Valor Christian College.