• November 18, 2019

MSU men win opener in double OT - The Trail Blazer: News

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MSU men win opener in double OT

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Posted: Wednesday, November 6, 2019 9:51 am | Updated: 10:13 am, Wed Nov 6, 2019.

Morehead State men's basketball picked up a gut-check victory in the first game out in the 2019-20 season as the Eagles outlasted visiting Samford 90-86 in double overtime at Johnson Arena Tuesday.

The Eagles, who have now won four of the last five season openers, played the Bulldogs (former OVC foes) to an overtime battle for the second straight season.

Senior guard Jordan Walker scored a game-high 25 points, including two free throws with 0.5 seconds left to send the game to overtime.

The Eagles now host Spalding (Ky.) on Thursday at 6 p.m. ET.

 

KEY STATS

-Besides Walker's effort, junior forward James Baker tied his career high with 20 points and also had seven rebounds.

-Freshman forward Tyzhaun Claude registered a double-double (13 points, 11 rebounds) in his collegiate debut.

-Sophomore guard Malik Riddle scored a career-high 17 points and nabbed a career-best seven rebounds.

-Morehead State out-rebounded Samford 53-49 despite the visitors grabbing 23 offensive boards.

-The Eagles shot 45 percent (33-of-73) for the game, including 50 percent in the overtimes.

-MSU registered 48 points in the paint.

-Josh Sharkey led Samford with 24 points.

KEY MOMENTS

- After the Eagles led 3-2 at the 18:18 mark of the opening half, Samford used a 9-2 run to pull ahead 11-5 in the next four minute span.

-Samford led 17-10 with 11:01 left in the half but the Eagles stayed within striking distance with a 6-3 run, led by Baker with four points.

-A quick 5-0 spur by Samford put the Bulldogs back out by nine (25-16).

-After missing his first seven shots, Walker finally drilled his first three-pointer of the season at the 4:33 mark.

-Samford led 27-16 but a 9-0 Eagle run, keyed by layups by Walker and Claude within 20 seconds of each other, got the Eagles back into the game.

-Walker's jumper at 2:17 tied the game at 27, and then he gave the Eagles the lead at the 1:45 mark with his second triple of the night.

-The home team finished the half on a 19-3 run to lead 35-30.

 

-Samford regained the lead (53-52) at the 10:01 mark of the final half, but junior guard Justin Thomas took it right back with a lay-in 25 seconds later that ignited a quick 6-0 run.

-DeAndre Thomas nailed a corner three-ball with 49 seconds left to give the Bulldogs a 70-68 lead.

-In the final 7:17 of the game, the teams weren't separated by more than two points.

-Walker was fouled with 0.5 seconds left and hit both free tosses to tie the game at 70 and send it to overtime.

-Sharkey hit a layup with 51 ticks left in the extra period to give the visitors a 76-74 lead.

-Walker went into traffic and hit the game-tying layup with 28 seconds left, and Samford missed a potential game winner with five seconds left to send it the second overtime.

-Walker canned a long three with 3:03 left in the second OT to push MSU on top 81-78.

-Riddle drained a three-ball 30 seconds later to push the Eagles on top 84-78.

-Senior guard Djimon Henson drew an offensive foul on Sharkey with 56 seconds left in the second OT, and Sharkey fouled out.

 

QUOTING COACH SPRADLIN

"That was as valuable a win as probably any team in the country tonight. To win against a really good Samford team with four starters back, especially on a night when we really didn't play all that well, is huge."

"We absolutely found a way to win. When you look at the stats we gave up (20 turnovers, 23 offensive rebounds), I didn't think we played all that well. We willed ourselves to win in front of a great enthusiastic crowd. You talk about having three freshman out there playing a bunch of minutes and a ton of new guys, this was an incredible team victory."

"Jordan put us on his back. He had a tough night shooting, but there was no doubt in my mind he was going to step to the line and make those free throws to get us to overtime."