The No. 1-ranked University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point men’s basketball team held off a late charge by Lawrence University and pulled away for a 79-59 nonconference victory Tuesday night at Alexander Gymnasium.

Tyler Tillema scored 18 points and Jerrel Harris and Louis Hurd added 17 points apiece to lead the Pointers (1-0). Tyler Crisman scored 16 points to pace Lawrence (0-1), which got 14 points from Erik Borresen and 13 from Chris Siebert.

Stevens Point led by 19 midway through the second half, but the Vikings cut that lead in half over the next six minutes. Lawrence went on a 12-2 run, getting a pair of 3-pointers from freshman Max Burgess in that stretch, to cut the margin to 62-53 with 4:41.

Hurd answered with a layup, but Jon Mays countered with a jumper for the Vikings. Hurd then hit a jumper for Stevens Point, but Borresen hit a jumper in the lane with 2:40 left to cut the margin to 66-57.

That was as close as Lawrence would get as Stevens Point scored the next 11 points to pull away.

Stevens Point jumped on the Vikings by scoring the game’s first eight points. Lawrence countered by scoring the next seven points, but the Pointers put together a very strong first half.

Stevens Point built an 18-7 lead with 12:52 left in the first half before Lawrence scored the game’s next seven points. The Pointers then pulled away over the final nine minutes of the first half to lead 44-25 at the half.

Lawrence returns to action when it travels to UW-Oshkosh on Nov. 24.

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