EVANSTON, Ill. --- Aside from closing the nonconference schedule with a win, the best news for Northwestern on Sunday was that scoring leader Reggie Hearn should bounce back quickly from a left ankle sprain sustained last week.
Hearn watched from the bench while a relatively young Northwestern lineup shared the scoring load on the way to a 63-42 victory over Brown at Welsh-Ryan Arena.
Dave Sobolewski collected a team-high 14 points -- all in the second half -- while five other players had eight or more points.
"Without Drew (Crawford) and Reggie we're going to need other guys to score," Sobolewski said. "If we get that kind of consistent scoring from different guys, we're going to win a lot of games."
Tre Demps, Kale Abrahamson and Alex Marcotullio each added nine for the Wildcats (9-4). Sean McGonagill, a former Riverside-Brookfield star, collected a game-high 20 points for Brown (3-6).
With two starters out of action, Wildcat coach Bill Carmody gave Marcotullio his first start while Abrahamson made his third.
Four different Wildcats hit from beyond the arc in the game's opening 4 minutes, 24 seconds -- including a pair from Abrahamson -- as Northwestern sprinted to an quick 15-0 lead. Brown's Tucker Halpern broke the shutout 19 seconds later with a 3-pointer.
The game's first seven field goals on both sides were 3-pointers.
The Wildcats struggled a bit inside the paint as Brown had several open first half looks yet still limited the Bears to its fewest points of the season.
Brown never got closer than eight points through the balance of the half as Northwestern claimed a 28-18 lead behind nine points from Tre Demps off the bench.
The Wildcats then outscored the Bears 10-1 in the first 3:55 of the second half for a 38-19 lead following Sobolewski's bank shot.
"I think the the first five minutes of each half the combined score was 25-1 and you can't give a team like that that type of cushion," Bears head coach Mike Martin said. "They're so disciplined offensively. We withstood the initial surge and made it ballgame for the first half. It was key for us to have a better start in the second half and we didn't."
Northwestern followed its initial second half outburst with a 16-1 run -- including four consecutive 3-pointers -- for a 60-27 lead with 9:11 to play. Brown closed the gap to 21 in the late going.
"I was happy with the way we came out on both ends of the court," Carmody said. "I thought we guarded very well. Swop (Jared Swopshire) did a very good job on Sully (Brown scoring leader Matt Sullivan), he's a good player and a good scorer. And Dave (Sobolewksi) was on McGonagill and did a very nice job.
"Offensively we came out and I felt we ran through our stuff nicely, shots went in," he added. "Nobody was breaking plays, they were just executing the way you do in practice."
Hearn, averaging 14.5 points per game, was sidelined with a left ankle spain suffered Friday against Stanford but participated in pre-game warmups.
He's the second Wildcat top producer out out of action. Crawford, the No. 2 scorer, is out for the season with a shoulder injury.
Sunday's game was a homecoming for Brown's tri-captains. Along with McGonagill, locals included senior Tyler Ponticelli from nearby Northbrook and Glenbrook North High School while Sullivan, the Ivy League's scoring leader (16 points) is a Loyola Academy graduate.
All got warm receptions during introductions.
NOTES: Brown was back in action after a 15-day layoff. The Bears dropped an 84-57 decision on Dec. 8 at Notre Dame ... The Bears hope to break a three-game losing streak when they play crosstown Providence for the first time at home since 1982 on Friday at the Pizzitola Sports Center ... Northwestern has a 10-day break until Jan. 3 when it kicks off Big Ten play at home against Michigan ... The Wildcats hold a 5-2 series lead in seven meetings in a series dating back to 1961-62. The Bears beat the Wildcats 73-67 last year at Welsh-Ryan Arena ... The Bears-Wildcats series dates back to 1961-62 ... Welsh-Ryan Arena will switch to wrestling late this week when the 50th annual Midlands Tournament opens Dec. 29 ... Brown's wife, Kristin, gave birth to Avery Rita Martin last Tuesday. She checked in a an even 7 pounds and is their second child.