ATHENS, OH Just three days after the MU football team played its way into the NCAA record books, Miamis basketball team carved out a little bit of rival history Sunday with a 92-88 triple overtime win against intrastate rival Ohio at the Convocation Center.
MIAMI 92, OHIO 88
Any time you can win at OU, if youre Miami, its a big deal, Miami associate head coach Jermaine Henderson said. The players did a great job of sticking to the game plan. There was as much adversity in that game as weve had in 14 games.
It was the fourth time an MU basketball team has gone to triple overtime, and the Bobcats were also involved in one of the others a 91-86 RedHawks win Jan. 25, 1992.
FREE THROW FACTOR
The winning RedHawks made just one field goal in each of the overtime periods, but they nonetheless pulled out the victory thanks to a 43-29 rebounding advantage and clutch free throw shooting in the extra frames. Miami made 17-of-20 charity tosses following regulation time play. Ohio connected on 7-of-12.
Bobcats guard D. J. Cooper, who scored a game-high 27 points, made 10-of-13 from the line. However, all three misses came during the last two overtime periods.
Miamis Julian Mavunga missed both ends of a two-shot free throw opportunity with three seconds remaining and the RedHawks out front 90-88. But the second throw caromed back to Mavunga at the line, and he was fouled. He made both ends of that super bonus award to effectively seal the verdict.
We told the guys before the game the only key to victory was finding a way (to win), and today we did that, Henderson said.
Mavunga, who scored 15 points and had eight rebounds, was one of two RedHawks to play the entire 55 minutes. The other RedHawks player to go the distance was Antonio Ballard. The senior tallied a career-high 26 points and also led the visitors with 12 rebounds. Five of those rebounds were on the offensive glass, where Miami had a 16-7 advantage.
Senior forward Nick Winbush was another key contributor for the Red and White with 19 points and nine rebounds before fouling out with 1:46 remaining in the second overtime. Winbush picked up his fourth foul with 7:48 remaining in regulation and came out for a while, However, he returned and chipped in another nine points before his final exit.
Nick definitely responded, Henderson said. Nick has energy. In that huddle, talking to our guys after he fouled out, he kept telling those guys, Listen, lets imagine what its going to feel like after we win this game.
THREE BOBCATS FOUL OUT
Ohio, meanwhile, had three players disqualified through fouls. Reggie Keely left at 5:21 of the second half, followed by DeVaughn Washington at 2:27. T.J. Hall exited at 2:23 of the first overtime. The trio provided 22 points and nine rebounds while in the game.
Ohio was paced by Coopers game-high 27 points, although he was 7-of-22 from the field. The sophomore also had 11 assists, five rebounds and three steals. Other Bobcats in double figures were Tommy Freeman (17), Ivo Baltic (16) and Washington (10).
Freeman typically did much of his damage from long range, hitting 5-of-7 from behind the arc. He was 3-of-4 on trey attempts in the first half.
Baltic, meanwhile was five-of-seven from the field, six-of-seven at the line and came up with several key steals late in the game. His spinning drive which resulted in an old-fashioned three-point play at 1:46 of the second overtime tied the contest at 79-all and were the final points of that period.
Four free throws by Allen Roberts and two by Orlando Williams gave MU an 85-82 lead in the final frame. Ohios Asown Sayles made one-of-two at 1:37 to make it a two-point game before Baltic nailed a jumper at the :53 mark to tie the game a final time, 85-all.
WILLIAMS HITS BIG SHOT
Sophomore Orlando Williams drained Miamis 11th trey of the game with 29 seconds remaining. After Cooper missed on a three from the top of the key, Ballard went up in a crowd to pull down the rebound. He was fouled upon landing and made two free throws to put Miami up by five with 10 seconds on the clock.
Nick Kellogg scored his only points of the day when he hit a trey from the corner with five seconds left. Ohio put Mavunga at the line with three seconds left, and the strategy looked good when the junior forward missed both. However, the second one bounced back to him, and he made his next two free throws after being fouled.
I know one game doesnt make our season, but those guys hadnt won down here (in Athens). Henderson said after the Miami victory.
Many of the final stats reflected the close play.
Ohio connected on 43.8 percent from the field, including 11-of-23 (47.8 percent) from behind the arc. Miami made 42.4 percent from the field, which included 11-of-27 (40.7 percent) on treys.
The visitors enjoyed advantages on stats related to rebounding, while Ohio benefitted from more steals (12-5) and less turnovers (11-17).
Miamis biggest lead of the first half was seven points (9-2). Ohio also had a seven point advantage after Hall hit a three-ball at the 2:54 mark. The game was, prophetically, tied (33-33) at intermission.
Coopers two free throws with 49 second left in regulation forged a 65-all tie that sent both the teams into a first overtime, and a Cooper three resulted in a 73-all deadlock after two overtimes.
The RedHawks (6-9, 1-0 MAC) will return home to face Buffalo Thursday. UB is coming off a 74-71 double overtime loss at Bowling Green Saturday.
Ohio (7-8, 0-1 MAC) travels to Akron, which notched a 65-62 win over rival Kent State Saturday.
Ohio has played into overtime in three of its last five games. The longest was a four overtime loss at St. Bonaventure (112-107) Chris McHenry got a start at guard and provided 11 points for Miami The Redhawks bench produced 13 points and committed nine fouls. Seven of those points were by Quinten Rollins, who saw 34 minutes of action Ohio senior Tommy Freeman is hitting 43.4 percent of his trey attempts. He has been in double figures in six of his last seven games The 92 points are the most Miami has scored since a double-overtime loss at Valparaiso on Feb. 23, 2008.