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The Lakeland College men's basketball team saw their eight-game win streak fall apart as it was defeated by Northern Athletics Conference foe Concordia University, Wis., 73-70, in overtime on Tuesday, Jan. 15, at Lakeland.
After trailing throughout the entire game, the Muskies (10-5 overall, 6-2 NAC) slowly caught up throughout the second half, then went on a 9-0 run to surge into the lead on a lay-up by senior forward Danny Ehnert to give the Muskies the 65-63 advantage with 2:34 remaining in the game.
The Falcons tied the score at 65, which was good enough to send the game into overtime as neither team was able to find the basket in the final two minutes of regulation. Concordia went on to out-score Lakeland, 8-5, in overtime to take the game.
Although Concordia handed Lakeland its first NAC loss since December 4, the Muskies were almost able to pull off a dazzling comeback after starting off the game a cold 0-11 from the field down by as many as 18 points.
The Muskies closed the gap throughout the first half to go into the locker room down, 44-34, at half, but still shot just 30.8 percent in the period.
"It really hurts when you are down 18 points after the first nine minutes," said Lakeland head coach Kyle Brumett. "It's really disappointing to play as well as we have, then start as poorly as we did. You can't dig yourself that big a hole with any team."
Lakeland bounced back to shoot 47.4 percent from the floor in the second half, aided by a 19-point effort by senior guard Aaron Regal and a double-double from Ehnert, who finished with 11 points and 11 rebounds. However, the squad made just 66.7 percent of their free throw shots for the game to put them just a few short in the end.
"We got to the free throw line about 40 times, but we needed to make a few more to win," Brumett said. "We should have won the game in regulation. We also had some easy open shots that we missed, and we can't afford to not finish those plays off."
Junior forward Peter Worth also chipped in with 11 points and eight rebounds for the Muskies, while sophomore forward Anthony Cobb came off the bench to contribute eight points.
Lakeland will look to get back in the win column with their next NAC contest against Wisconsin Lutheran on Saturday, Jan. 19.
"We tinkered with the starting line-up, and that didn't work real well for us tonight," Brumett said. "We need to go back and look at our rotations and execute our game plan on Saturday. That's the kind of group that we have. We're disappointed and we're going to find a way to do better."
Saturday's game time with Wisconsin Lutheran is set for 4:15 p.m. at Lakeland.