CIRCLEVILLE, OH - Coming into Saturday's matchup with IU East, many fans were expecting the best game of the season for the Trailblazers. Despite losing on the road earlier in the season to the Red Wolves, OCU had made strides in improving since then, showing their toughness in a talented RSC East division. Already having clinched the #3 seed for the tournament, the Trailblazers came into the day looking to fine tune their abilities against the best in preparation for next week.
The first half would live up to expectations, as the two squads traded blows in a tight battle, leading to a 38-38 score at the half. As the second half began, the Trailblazers looked to hit their stride. However, both teams were unable to pull away, as the neither team exceeded a five point lead for the remainder of the game. With 2:18 left, OCU's Jalen Hearn (JR/Columbus, OH) hit a deep three giving the Trailblazers the lead. The Red Wolves would respond, as two quick buckets gave them back a one point lead with 53 seconds remaining. The game was far from over, as Marquis Jackson (SR/Cleveland, OH) hit a jumper to retake the lead. After losing the lead once again, the ball would find its way into Jackson's hands with 0.4 seconds left on the clock. Jackson got a quality look at the hoop, but failed to convert, giving IU East the 74-73 victory. Marquis would go on to finish with 22, followed by Gary Hoover (SR/Columbus, OH) (13 points, 10 rebounds).
The Trailblazers will now focus their attention on Wednesday evening, when OCU will travel to take on the Eagles of Cincinnati Christian University. The tip time for that game has been set for 7:00 PM EST. To follow the action, follow us on Twitter (@OCUtrailblazers) and Facebook (Ohio Christian University Trailblazers). The game will also be live streamed and will be available through Cincinnati Christian's website, located here.