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Men's Basketball Falls to Albion (Mich.) in First Round of McDonald's Holiday Classic

Junior guard Luke Schaefer (Photo Courtesy of Jesse Kucewicz)
Junior guard Luke Schaefer (Photo Courtesy of Jesse Kucewicz)

BLUFFTON, Ohio – In the McDonald's of Bluffton Holiday Classic hosted by Bluffton University, the Baldwin Wallace University men's basketball team fell to Albion (Mich.) College, 73-70 inside the Sommer Center.

BW (5-4) was led by freshman guard Anthony Mazzeo (North Canton/Massillon Jackson) who scored a career-high 20 points off 70% shooting and 4-of-6 from long range. Junior guard Luke Schaefer (Medina) poured in 13 and senior two-time Academic All-Ohio Athletic Conference guard Michael Quiring (Brunswick) chipped in 10 and recorded a game-high six assists. Senior forward Drew Sova (Chagrin Falls/Kenston) snagged a game-high 11 rebounds.

Albion (6-2) was led by junior forward Caden Ebeling who tallied a game-high 22 points. Sophomore guard MJ Barnes contributed 18 off the bench while junior guard Jamazell Davis Jr. registered 16. Junior forward Quinton Armstrong threw in 15 and grabbed seven boards.

BW drops to 1-2 in the all-time series with Albion. In the '05-06 season, Albion emerged with a 75-72 victory.

Albion opened the game with an 11-3 run over the first four minutes and sixteen seconds. The Yellow Jackets established their first lead of 12-11 at 13:36. The Britons responded with a 13-5 run to take 24-17 lead with 7:49 left in the first. At the 4:35 mark, BW tied the game up at 28 with a Mazzeo trey. The teams tied up at 35 with 1:40 left in the first, and went into halftime tied at 37.

Mazzeo scored BW's first seven points in the second half to give the Yellow Jackets a 44-39 lead at the 17:23 mark. Albion retook a 56-54 lead at 9:21 with a 17-10 spurt. BW took a 64-60 lead at 5:43 with a 10-4 run, capped off with a three from senior guard Zach Cebula (Brunswick). The Britons took a 68-66 lead at 4:12 before a layup from Quiring would tie the game up at 68, with 3:48 left in regulation. Schaefer gave BW the lead with a layup at 3:12 before Albion responded with a layup of their own at 2:24. The Britons sank the final basket of the game at 1:36 to walk away with the 73-70 victory.

The Yellow Jackets are back in action tomorrow to conclude the Classic, with a game against host, Bluffton University at 7 p.m.