San Antonio – Jawan Bailey and Pierce Caldwell combined for 41 points, helping the University of the Incarnate Word hold off a strong challenge from St. Mary’s University, 69-59, in Heartland Conference men’s basketball action Saturday afternoon at Bill Greehey Arena.

Four Rattlers scored in double figures in the game, led by Curtis Mitchell (Jr., Milwaukee, Wis.) with 11 points. Nick Morey (Sr., Belpre, Ohio), Ronald Tata (Sr., Houston) and Jeff Campbell (Fr., Allen) all had 10 points for the Rattlers.

St. Mary’s held UIW to just 31.4 percent (16-51) from the field, but allowed the Cardinals to make 33-of-42 free throws in the game. Nearly half of the Cardinals points in the game came at the free throw line. The Rattlers also forced just six Cardinal turnovers in the game, while St. Mary’s committed 15.

The game was significantly closer than the final margin indicated with nine lead changes and six ties. In the second half, however, the Rattlers never took the lead, despite tying the score three times. The Cardinals finished the game by outscoring the Rattlers 8-2 to pull away.

With the loss the Rattlers fell to 8-9 overall and 3-3 in Heartland Conference play this season. UIW improved to 14-4, 6-1. St. Mary’s will return to action on Thursday when they travel to Odessa, to play the University of Texas of the Permian Basin at 8 p.m.

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