Marietta College scored 52 points and shot 63 percent from the field in the second half en route to an 89-66 win over Denison on Wednesday evening.
Trailing 53-51 with 14:26 left in regulation, the Pioneer offense caught fire with a 27-7 run that resulted in an 18-point lead with less than five minutes to go. Ahead 64-55, J.J. Martin scored five-straight points to give the Pioneers a double-digit lead. Matt Napier capped off the offensive outburst with a triple that put the home squad up 78-60.
In the second period, Marietta converted on 22 of 35 attempts, including a 5-for-11 performance from three-point land. They also pulled down 22 rebounds and recorded 24 points in the paint.
Denison jumped out to an early lead in the first period, gaining a 24-14 advantage midway through the half on a Briggs King three. The Pioneers slowly shrunk the deficit, eventually taking a 33-32 advantage with 4:35 on the clock. Tied at 35-35, sophomore Bret Woolard converted an old-fashioned three-point play to put DU back on top with less than three minutes to play. However, a Napier jumper made it a one-point game at the break.
Marietta shot 57 percent (37-for-65) on the night, while Denison converted 44 percent (24-for-54) from the floor. The Pioneers held the advantage in rebounding (38-25), bench points (47-22) and points in the paint (38-26).
Senior Dimonde Hale paced the Big Red with 13 points, while Woolard scored 11 points and grabbed four rebounds. The sophomore was 4-for-7 from the field, including a 2-for-4 performance from long distance. King also grabbed a team-best five rebounds.
Martin shot 11-for-16 from the field en route to scoring a game-high 29 points. Napier recorded a double-double off the bench with 13 points and 11 rebounds, while Garrett Stephenson chipped in 14 tallies.
Denison falls to 3-4, while the Pioneers improve to 4-2 on the year. The Big Red resumes North Coast Athletic Conference play on Monday at Oberlin. Tip-off is slated for 8 p.m.