Men’s Basketball Loses in Quadruple Overtime Thriller
This past Saturday The College of St. Scholastica men’s basketball team competed for the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC) championship against the University of Northwestern Eagles in St. Paul. This game was a repeat from last season’s UMAC championship game where the Eagles upended the Saints and took the crown. The Saints were looking to turn the tables this time around.
The beginning of the game went the complete opposite of how the Saints wanted it to go. They quickly fell behind seven-to-nothing after two minutes of play. The next couple minutes didn’t go any better as they fell down 19-2 after four minutes of play. Their largest deficit of the half came with five minutes remaining when they were trailing 40-19. They were able to cut the deficit to 14 points at halftime, however, with the score at Northwestern 42, St. Scholastica 28.
The Saints spent the entire second half playing catch up. The game stayed at a 15 to 16 point margin for the first eight minutes. Back-to-back layups from junior Zach Dahlman and freshman Collin Anderson brought the score deficit to 11 with 11:08 remaining. The score stayed at a consistent 10-12 point margin until a three from Anderson brought the score to within seven with 6:06 to play. Two minutes later a three from senior Julius Johnson brought it to a six-point game. The Eagles extended their lead to nine with 1:26 remaining in the game. Sophomore Brandon Newman brought the
margin down to seven with a responding bucket. The Eagles were then forced to shoot free throws and went one-for-two from the line to make it an eight-point game with 1:05 remaining. Anderson hit a three and after an Eagles turnover, sophomore Nate Weets also hit a three to bring the game to two with 50 seconds remaining. The Saints then gave up a layup to make it a four-point game, but coming right back down the court was Johnson, who forced a foul and got himself to the line to shoot two; he made them both. The next possession the Saints were almost out of magic as they forced a turnover but their next shot was blocked and they were forced to foul. The Eagles player choked under pressure and missed both free throws with only nine seconds remaining to set up one last possession for the Saints to tie or go for the win. Johnson burned his defender on the possession and scored an easy layup to tie the game at 78 with three seconds remaining.
Overtime started off with both teams missing shots for the first two and a half minutes. The Eagles would score first off of a free throw, but a three from Anderson on the next possession gave the Saints their first lead of the game with the score at 81-79. Four straight points from the Eagles put the Saints back down by two with 59 seconds remaining. Dahlman hauled in an offensive rebound and was fouled on his way back up after a Saints missed shot. He would hit both free throws and the clock ran out with the score once again tied up at 83.
In the second overtime Anderson got things started by driving in the paint and getting a bucket. The Eagles answered back with a two of their own and tied the game at 85. A couple of free throws from Newman gave the Saints a two-point lead, but the Eagles answered back with a three. Newman made his way back to the line but went one-for-two to tie the game at 88 and force a third overtime.
The Eagles scored first in overtime number three. The Saints would bring it to a one-point game after going one-for-two from the line. Later in the overtime Newman brought the score back to within one with 2:36 left. Then Anderson hit a three to give the Saints a two-point lead on the next possession. A three and a layup from the Eagles put them back up by three only to be answered by Anderson who hit another three to tie the game at 97 with 42 seconds left in the third overtime. The Saints were forced to foul and the Eagles converted both free throws to go up by two. A missed three from the Saints forced them to foul once again. The Eagles player missed one of the free throws to give the Saints one last opportunity to tie. They had six seconds to get to the other side of the court and hit a three to send it into the fourth overtime. That was no problem for Anderson, who took the inbound pass, dribbled up the court, and with three defenders in his face hit a pull-up three at the buzzer to tie the game at 100 and send it into another five-minute period.
The Eagles put up four straight points to start the fourth overtime. It was free throw after free throw for both teams to follow and the Saints’ magic eventually ran out as they would lose in a hard fought game with a final score of 112-108.
“It was a great battle back as a team, being down 21 and coming back to force 4 OTs was something special,” said Kory Deadrick. “We had opportunities and that is all you can ask for. It was a great game, just unfortunate to be on the losing side.”
“That Northwestern game was the best game I’ve ever been a part of and I wouldn’t want to go out any other way,” said senior Anthony Adamczak. “That game will go down in history as the best UMAC title game ever.”
Anderson put up a career high and game-leading 36 points, while Newman added 22 of his own to lead the scoring for Scholastica.
This game marked the end of a 17-10 (12-4 UMAC) season for the Saints. They will be losing three seniors in Kory Deadrick, Julius Johnson, and Anthony Adamczak.
“I’m going to miss playing on the court with the boys every weekend,” said Johnson. “As much as I hate long bus rides, I will miss all the conversations that went on during our trips. Everyone on the team is fun to be around and I will miss playing with these guys.”
For every team on campus, their teammates are their family and it’s never easy to know you’re done playing with them.
“The thing I will miss the most about basketball is just being with teammates and joking around with them,” said Adamczak. “That’s what it’s all about, and they are the best group of guys I could ask for.”