Jan 29, 2015
NEW LONDON, Conn. – Mitchell College outlasted Becker College in a double-overtime showdown on Thursday night to earn an 86-83 victory in New England Collegiate Conference men's basketball action at the Yarnall Athletic Center.
Joshua Ford (Jersey City, N.J./Saint Anthony) hit one of two free throws to put Mitchell up by three with just one second remaining in the second overtime. After calling timeout, Becker had to go the length of the floor for an attempt at the tie. The inbounds pass went to Rashaun Liggon (Elizabeth, N.J./St. Mary of the Assumption) just past the half-court stripe, and he nearly extended the game with a heave that drew the back of the rim.
Parris Hill (Stockton, Calif./Brookside Christian) led Mitchell (6-9 overall, 4-4 NECC) with 23 points and 10 rebounds while Donavan McClean (Jersey City, N.J./Lincoln) added 22 points. Ford played 48 of a possible 50 minutes and finished with a double-double of 14 points and 19 rebounds, including eight on the offensive glass. Devonta Mosley (Gainesville, Fla./Eastside) also scored in double figures with 11 points and contributed six rebounds.
Reginald Finney (Ansonia, Conn./Ansonia) led all scorers with a career-high 33 points and pulled down nine rebounds to pace Becker (8-8 overall, 3-4 NECC). Liggon came off the bench to record a double-double with 16 points and a team-high 12 rebounds. Donovin Ford-Hayes (Windsor Locks, Conn./Windsor Locks) and Scott Dulaire (Bloomfield, Conn./Master's School) each chipped in with seven points while the latter added six assists.
Becker's biggest lead came with 2:30 to play in regulation following a made jumper by Finney that put the Hawks in front 71-65. Mitchell closed the gap with a 7-1 run, tying the score at 72-72 on a layup by Hill with 37 seconds remaining. Becker called timeout to draw up its final play, though Maturah had his shot blocked by Hill to give the Mariners a final chance. McClean corralled the rebound and pushed the ball up the floor to Mosley, who fired a long three at the buzzer that was off the mark.
In the first overtime, Mitchell tied the game at 78-78 on a layup by McClean with 1:01 to go. The Hawks then came up empty on their next offensive possession, and the Mariners called timeout with 20 seconds remaining and a chance at the win. Frank Martin (Port St. Lucie, Fla./Port St. Lucie) dribbled out the majority of the clock before launching a three-pointer from the top of the key that went wide.
The score was knotted at 80-80 in the second overtime when a jumper by Hill put Mitchell on top for good. A drive and layup from McClean put the Mariners up by three with 2:30 to play, but Liggon cut the deficit back to one with a bucket with 58 ticks remaining. On Mitchell's ensuing possession Ford came up with a huge offensive rebound that forced Becker into fouling. Martin went to the line for the Mariners and made one of two to pad the lead to two.
Becker had the chance to go for the tie or the win on its final possession. Coming out of a timeout, the Hawks tried to find Finney in the paint but had the ball stolen away by Martin. Ford was fouled with one second to go and made the second of two attempts, setting the stage for Liggon's final hoist at the buzzer.
Neither team led by more than six points throughout the entire contest. The lead changed hands 15 times and the score was tied 12 times, including at halftime (35-35), the end of regulation (72-72) and the completion of the first overtime (78-78).
Finney netted 17 of his 33 points in the second half but was limited to just a pair of free throws in the overtime stanzas. He shot 15-for-25 from the field and went 3-for-6 from long range.
Mitchell will next play at Elms College on Saturday, January 31 at 2:00 p.m. Becker returns to action at home against Newbury College on Saturday at 3:00 p.m.