Concordia bolted to a 12-0 lead over the first 3 minutes of the contest and then withstood a pair of Marian comeback efforts to eke out an 82-79 win last night in the Buuck Fieldhouse. CUW's Matt Paluchniak forced a trio of turnovers in the early going and Marian gave up the ball without a shot no less than seven times in the first eight minutes of the contest.
What looked like easy pickings (30-18 after 12 minutes) suddenly turned around as Concordia began launching quick shots and the Sabres found some rhythm to their offense . By halftime Marian (1-6 on the season) had roared back to trim their deficit to just 39-36.
The second half was almost a carbon copy. CUW appeared to have re-established control midway through the final segment but the never-say-die guests rallied from 11 down in the final five minutes of the contest, missing a potential game-tying 3 as time expired.
One of CUW's main heroes saw only 7 minutes of action, all in the second half. During that limited time on the court reserve guard Krei Meier hit 4 consecutive 3's, moved well without the ball, and revitalized a Concordia offense that had become visibly stagnant.
Shawn Cassidy's team launched 27 3 point efforts but only Meier had success from distance as the fortunate Falcons improved to 6-1 on the season.
Edward Newton-Kemp (22) and Luke Doedens(13) led Concordia in scoring but the pair combined to hit only 4 of 16 from beyond the arc. Doedens delighted the crowd with a pair of highlight-reel dunks.
Zach Damrow led Marian with 22 points including six 3 pointers.