NEWARK, Del. -- Guard Nick Schlitzer (Pottsville, Pa./Pottsville) scored 18 of his game-high 20 points in the second half to help the Philadelphia University men's basketball team overcome a six-point halftime deficit and defeat Wilmington (Del.) 68-62 in a Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) contest Wednesday night.
Philadelphia, a winner in its last six games, improves to 9-4 overall and 4-1 in conference play. The victory is the 994th in Herb Magee's hall of fame coaching career.
Wilmington dips to 3-12 overall, 2-5 against the CACC.
The Rams entered the second half trailing 30-24, but quickly erased that deficit by shooting 5-of-6 from the field during a 12-4 run in the opening 3:47 to take a 36-34 lead on a 3-pointer from guard Jordan DiCicco ().
After Rashaun Rasheed made a layup to tie the score at 36, Philadelphia would rattle off 12 of the next 14 points, capped by a Schlitzer 3-pointer at the 11:39 mark, to pull in front 48-38. Philadelphia shot 5-of-8 during the surge, while Wilmington was 1-of-4 and turned the ball over three times.
The Wildcats pulled within 53-49 when Tyrik Gass put back a Shai Henry missed 3-pointer with 8:46 to play in the contest.
Back-to-back layups from forward Peter Alexis (Wilkes-Barre, Pa./Holy Redeemer) finished off a 7-2 run and allowed the Rams to regain a nine-point cushion (60-51).
Valentino Thompson gave the Wildcats life late as he hit a 3-pointer with 40 seconds left to cut the Ram lead to 64-60. Schlitzer and guard Andre Gibbs (Smyrna, Del./Smyrna) each went 2-for-2 from the line to seal the win.
Wilmington took control of a back-and-forth first half, closing it out with a 12-4 run over the final to take the six-point lead to the locker room.
Gibbs finished the game shooting 8-of-9 from the line on his way to a season-high 18 points. Forward TJ Huggins (Alexandria, Va./TC Williams) shot 6-of-9 from the field to end up with 13 points.
Alexis picked up his eighth double-double of the season with 12 points and 12 rebounds. He also blocked four shots, tying a season high.
The Rams shot 49.1 percent (26-of-53) from the field, their second-best shooting performance of the year.
Thompson paced Wilmington with 12 points.
Philadelphia heads to the University of the Sciences for a CACC clash on Saturday, Jan. 10 at 3 p.m.