MILWAUKEE - Mitchell Schneider scored a career-high 25 points and the Concordia University Wisconsin men's basketball team continued its hot shooting in an 89-68 victory over Wisconsin Lutheran College during a Northern Athletics Conference contest on Tuesday night.
The Falcons (4-1, 2-0 NAC) finished with a season-best 62.5 percent from the field and shot over 50 percent for the third time this season. CUW changed gears on its scoring output and scored 46 of its points in the paint, several coming on dunks by senior Luke Doedens and junior Steve Zielinski.
"We played very unselfish basketball tonight," head coach Shawn Cassidy said. "Our aggressive play on the boards and in the paint set the tone early in the game. Brian [Jackson] and Steve [Zielinski] played very good basketball tonight and they are big reasons why we controlled the paint."
Schneider (New Holstein, Wis.) scored 10 of his game-high 25 points in the opening half as the Falcons built a 40-27 lead at the intermission. CUW cruised in the second half and WLC (1-5, 0-1 NAC) never got closer than 11 points, but fell behind by as many as 25 points on two occasions.
"I am pleased with the way we are coming together," Cassidy said. "We are starting to play complete games of basketball each time we step onto the floor."
Junior Brian Jackson (Carol Stream, Ill.) finished with a career-high 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting, while Doedens (Cedarburg, Wis.) scored 11 points. Freshman Ben Brooke (Viroqua, Wis.) finished with 10 points off the bench, including 6-of-6 at the free throw line and Schneider recorded nine rebounds, five steals and four assists.
Alex Merbach finished with a team-high 19 points for WLC, while Andy Thusius scored 12 points.
The Falcons bench was effective as it outscored the Warriors 34-18 in the victory. Zielinski was a factor early in the contest, and finished with nine points and six rebounds, to go along with a career-high four blocks in 13 minutes of action.
In the second half CUW used a 19-6 run to extend its lead to 25 points with 10:21 remaining in the game, which allowed Cassidy to play every player that suited for the game.
The Falcons also finished with an impressive 42-21 advantage in rebounding, but did have 21 turnovers. CUW concluded the victory with 26 assists on 35 field goals.
CUW jumped out to a 12-3 lead in the first five minutes of action before going up by 13 points, 23-10, midway through the half. WLC responded to cut its deficit to five points, before a pair of Schneider 3-pointers and dunks by Doedens and Zielinski gave the Falcons a 40-27 halftime lead.
The Falcons opened the first 20 minutes of play shooting 58.6 percent. CUW assisted on 15 of its 17 field goals in the first half, held a 24-11 advantage in rebounding and outscored WLC 28-8 in the paint.
CUW returns to the hardwood on Thursday for its second game of the week when it hosts Silver Lake College at 7 p.m. inside the R. John Buuck Field House.
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