Second-Half Run from Pioneers ends Capital’s Upset Bid against No. 18 Marietta

Pictured: Austin Schreck (photo credit: Izzi Palmisano)
Pictured: Austin Schreck (photo credit: Izzi Palmisano)

By: Sean Neidig, sports information graduate assistant

MARIETTA, Ohio – For the first 30 minutes of Wednesday night's game, it looked like Capital University Men's Basketball could do no wrong against the No. 18 Marietta College Pioneers. With about 10 minutes remaining though, the Pioneers showed why they are considered one of the 25 best teams in the country, going on a 34-14 run to end the game and come out with an 82-68 victory.

With the game tied at 48 with 10:54 to play, the Pioneers had erased an eight-point deficit, their largest of the game, which Capital held with 16 minutes left in the second half. The Pioneers used a 12-5 run to even the score and from that point on, Marietta took complete control of the game.

A three-pointer from Dillon Young put Marietta ahead 51-48 and another connection from downtown, this one courtesy of Jason Ellis, put the Pios up by five after Cameron Caldwell (Westerville, Ohio/Westerville South) made a free throw.

The offensive barrage kept up with five straight points from Ellis and another three-ball. The Crusaders tried their best to keep up but Marietta's offense was too explosive to match. The closest the Crusaders got the rest of the way was six points.

The Pioneers opened the game with a three-pointer but junior guard Austin Schreck (Erlanger, Ky./Dixie Heights) quickly answered with a triple of his own. The game went back-and-forth for the first six minutes but after that, the Crusaders were able to build a modest lead that hovered between two and five points until the Pioneers regained the lead with three and a half minutes in the half. Still, Capital responded and Scheck scored five in a row to end the first 20 minutes and the Crusaders led 30-29 at the break. Schreck finished the half with 11.

Capital began the second half on fire with a layup by Will Hannah (Milford, Ohio/Milford), a layup by Caleb Cox (Cincinnati, Ohio/Oak Hills) and a three from Caldwell to earn a 37-31 lead. From there, the Pioneers were able to claw their way back into the game until it was tied.

As a team, the Pioneers made nine three-pointers in the second half alone, a key factor in their comeback. Marietta made 13 total threes compared to Capital's seven. The Pioneers also shot better than 56 percent from the floor in the second half and held Capital to only 12 made second-half field goals.

Young's 14-point second half paced the Pioneers and he finished with a team-high 18 points and dished out seven assists. Schreck led the game with 20 points and hauled in six rebounds.

Capital returns to the Cap Center on Saturday, Jan. 20 to host the rival Otterbein University Cardinals. Tipoff for that contest is scheduled for 2 p.m.