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Wildcat Men Fall in Regular Season Finale at Upper Iowa

Posted: 23 February, 2014

The Wayne State College men's basketball team closed the regular season Saturday evening with an 85-74 loss to Upper Iowa at Dorman Gymnasium in Fayette, Iowa.

The host Peacocks move to 15-13 overall and 13-9 in the NSIC South, while WSC is now 8-18 and 5-17 in league play.

The first half featured six ties and five lead changes early, but Upper Iowa used an 11-0 scoring run fueled by a trio of 3-pointers to take the lead for good. Wayne State's final lead came at 16-15 with 9:17 to go in the first half following a Jared Bartling three-point play.

Two free throws by Adol Aluong knotted the score at 21-21 for the final time with 8:19 left in the half. The Peacocks then reeled off 11 straight points over the next 1:39 to take a 32-21 lead. WSC would end the first half trailing 37-31 as Upper Iowa's bench scored 32 of the team's 37 points in the first half.

The Peacocks jumped out quickly in the second half, scoring 11 of the first 13 points to take a 15 point advantage at 48-33 with 17:05 to play.

Trailing 58-44 with 13:15 left, WSC got as close as six at 60-54 with 9:55 to play following a Ty Bauschek 3-pointer. But the Peacocks sniffed out the rally by scoring the next nine points to push the lead back to 15 and Upper Iowa pulled away for the 85-74 win after leading by as many as 24 points with three minutes to play.

Senior center Jared Bartling led Wayne State with 20 points on 7 of 11 shooting and 6 for 11 at the foul line. Ty Bauschek (18) and Adol Aluong (14) also reached double figures for the Wildcats.

WSC made 26 of 59 shots for 44.1 percent, going 5 for 14 from 3-point range and 17 of 27 at the foul stripe.

Josh Weeber led five double digit scorers for Upper Iowa with 22 points. Grant Lang had 14, Jimmy Roth 13, Joey Woods 12 and Jordan Hay 10 for the Peacocks. UIU was 31 for 63 shooting for 49.2 percent, canning 11 of 25 from the 3-point line and just 12 for 23 at the free throw line.

Wayne State won the rebounding battle against Upper Iowa 45-30 thanks to a career-high 11 rebounds from Ryan Rolfzen and eight by Bauschek. Jordan Hay hauled in six boards for the Peacocks.

WSC had 21 turnovers in the game to 15 on Upper Iowa. Junior guard Gary Ross had a team-high four assists to lead Wayne State.

Wayne State will play a road game Wednesday evening in the first round of the NSIC Sanford Health Men's Basketball Tournament against an opponent to be determined later Saturday evening.

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