Klamath Falls, Ore. – The No. 15 Hustlin’ Owls of Oregon Tech upset the No. 6 Beacons of Northwest Christian in a barn-burner matchup, at home on Danny Miles Court. The two teams battled for the entire 40:00 minutes, as Tech comes away with the victory by a score of 88-77.
From the tipoff, both NCU and Oregon Tech came out with high energy. For the first 13:00 minutes of the half the scoring went back and forth keeping the score within single digits. A three-pointer by freshman, Seth Erickson, followed by a defensive stop and a layup by senior, Brandon Halter, stretched the Hustlin’ Owls lead to 11 points with the score 32-21. Tech would maintain their lead through the remainder of the first half, with NCU nipping at their heels. The Beacons closed the gap back to 6 points, as the teams headed into the halftime break with a score of 40-34.
The second half of play saw both teams pick up the defensive pressure, limiting quality looks at the hoop. 5:00 minutes in and the two teams had only scored a combine 11 points, before Erickson would hit a deep three-pointer sending Tech ahead with another double-digit lead. Moments later, Tech freshman, Tyler Hieb, would hit his second three-pointer of the game, followed by two free-throws, and the Owls would take a 14-point lead; the score sitting at 56-42.
As the half wore on, NCU would not back down, as they chipped away at the score working to narrow the point differential. With 8:00 minutes remaining to play, the Beacons cut the lead to single digits, and a three-pointer under pressure by Michael Loomis brought the score to 68-62. Neither team willing to give up anything on either end of the court, both teams battled to find the edge. A timeout would clear the floor with 1:58 left to play on the clock and the score 80-72 in favor of the Owls.
The game came to a close with NCU strategically trying to put Tech on the free-throw line, but they were unable to make the tactic work, as the Owls hit all 8 of their attempts from the line. The final buzzer sounded with the upset on the scoreboard, 88-77.
On the night, NCU was led by Jay Mayernik with 13 points and 5 rebounds. Teammates Brendyn Taylor, Brock Rice and Michael Loomis all added 11 points each.
Oregon Tech was led by Joel Yellow Owl with 19 points, 5 assists and 5 rebounds. Three freshmen, Seth Erickson, Mitchell Fink and Tyler Hieb, all put up double digits with 17, 15 and 10 points apiece, while Bryan Beard contributed 9 points and 9 rebounds.
The loss sees NCU move to 16-3 in the CCC, still holding on to 1st place as they head to Ashland, to take on SOU. Tech moves to 14-5 taking them into the final regular season game in a three-way tie for 2nd place in the CCC standings. Tech will take on Corban University on Saturday for senior day at Danny Mile Court.