LIMA - The last time the University of Northwestern Ohio men's basketball team won, the calendars still read 2011 and Christmas was still in the future. Monday's 88-66 win over Marygrove College at Racer Gymnasium broke a seven-game losing streak that began on December 21.
"I don't even know if I remember how it feels," UNOH coach Chris Adams said. "I feel really good for the kids because they played hard and lost some really hard-fought games. … It was good to see them happy. We just have to build on that."
Throughout the losing streak, Adams saw great performances and strong games go to waste as the losses piled up. Against Marygrove, though, the Racers finally saw their hard work and defensive intensity pay off in the win column.
The Mustangs (8-15) made just eight field goals in the first half, shooting 25.8 percent from the floor, as UNOH built a 39-24 lead. Meanwhile, Northwestern hit 56.7 percent from the floor.
Marygrove started the first two minutes of the second half with a 10-6 run, but UNOH answered with a 12-1 run and didn't lead by less than 16 points the rest of the way.
"Our kids came out, made good decisions and had an extra bounce in their step defensively. Our defensive intensity created some easy scoring opportunities to get us that lead early," Adams said. "As young as we are, getting that lead early is important because our confidence level goes up."
Jake Bolyard had his second straight 30-point performance, totaling 31 points against Marygrove. The sophomore made 5-of-9 3-pointers.
"Obviously, Jake Bolyard is a joy to watch on any given night," Adams said. "He showed an array of shots tonight. We just have to make sure we keep him healthy."
The Racers look to make it two straight wins when they travel to Aquinas College on Wednesday for a Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference showdown.
"We're at that time of the season where you want to play games, you don't want to practice. You won't get any better by practicing," Adams said.