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      Tech Men's BB survives Rangers' rally

      Courtesy: MTU

      The Michigan Tech men's basketball team defeated UW-Parkside 83-79 on Saturday (Dec. 21) from the SDC Gym to wrap up non-conference play. The Huskies had four players in double figures and buried 14 3-pointers to finish 4-0 against non-league opponents.

      Tech (6-2) held a three-point lead (72-69) with 3:05 remaining before Ben Stelzer buried a deep 3-pointer to double the margin. Jimmy Gavin made a pair of free throws for the Rangers, but Jordan Chartier answered nailing a three to push the lead to seven.

      Gavin then made 1-of-2 from the free throw line and Jordan Mach buried a jumper after the Huskies missed a three to close the gap to four with 1:14 to go. Tech made five free throws in the final 20 seconds and Parkside made a 3-pointer at the buzzer for the final four-point margin.

      "That was a tough game," Tech coach Kevin Luke said. "We had the big lead and knew they were going to come back. We were just good enough to hang on. It was a good team effort, and we had some guys make some big plays down the stretch on offense."

      Jason Hawke scored a career-high 19 points on 7-for-9 shooting while adding four rebounds and two assists. Austin Armga also scored 19 points while Stelzer tallied 18 points and six assists. Chartier was the other Husky in double figures with a career-high 12 points, making four 3-pointers.

      "Jason is capable of making shots and tonight he had a big tip in," Luke added. "He's coming along and fitting in well. He's got an exceptional IQ and helps spread the floor with his shooting."

      Tech shot 55 percent (31-for-66) from the field and 67 percent (14-for-21) from beyond the arc. Alex Culy led the Huskies in reboundingâ??tying a career-highâ??with eight while scoring six points on 2-for-2 shooting.

      The Huskies took a 13-point lead midway through the first half and extended it to 23 with 4:40 left before the break. The Rangers answered with a 13-1 run to cut the margin to 11 at halftime.

      The home team rebuilt the lead to 16 (48-32) two minutes into the second half but the Rangers continued to chip away and finally got the game to under 10 points (56-46) with 11:06 left.

      Andy Mazurczak scored a game-high 28 points for the Rangers, making 11-of-17 from the field. Zygimantas Riauka had a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds while Jordan Mach (16) and Jimmy Gavin (11) were also in double figures.

      UWP (7-2) shot 47 percent from the floor and only 10-for-20 from the free throw line. The Rangers out-rebounded Tech 35-32 and forced the Huskies into 12 turnovers.

      "To go through that non-conference schedule undefeated was huge, and it's good for our strength of schedule towards the end of the season," said Luke.

      The Huskies are off until the first weekend of the New Year when they host Ohio Dominican (Jan. 2) and Tiffin (Jan. 4) in a pair of GLIAC games.