CMU Men Fall at Buzzer at Benedictine
ATCHISON, KS -- A putback of a missed baseline jumper as time expired gave Benedictine a 51-50 victory over Central Methodist in the Heart of America Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Game of the Week.
John Harris, Jr. scored the game-winning bucket as time expired to give the one-point win. Benedictine trailed 50-47 with 23.4 to play after a layup by Central Methodist's Alex Barner, leaving the Ravens with a decision on how to play the final moments of the game. The Ravens chose to go for two and got an up-and-under conversion by T.J. Stevens with 11.1 second to play, closing to within a point.
The Ravens set up full-court pressure to try and force a turnover and got the result they desired. The ball was inbounded, but a turnover gave possession back to the Ravens with 9.6 seconds to play. The ball was swung around from the right corner where it went out of play to the left block, where Charlie Wallrapp attempted a jumper from deep on the left side. His shot was well off the mark, but Harris found himself on the backside. He grabbed the errant shot, and his putback climbed over the rim as time expired for the win.
A defensive struggle that included seven ties and nine lead changes never had more than eight points separating the two teams with the Eagles claiming that advantage early in the second half, 33-25. Benedictine scratched back into the game and used a 13-4 stretch over seven minutes to claim its first lead since the first half, 38-37.
Central Methodist's Elliott Black almost single-handedly kept his team on top in the second half, answering the Ravens' surge with six-straight points before the lead changed hands four times over the next four minutes. Melvin Tillman put the Eagles ahead by a point with 2:37 to play, and then both teams missed three-point shots on their next trips. Benedictine had a chance to go on top after a miss by Black with 1:55 to play, but the Eagles forced a turnover at the 1:16 mark. A miss by Tillman with 50 seconds left stayed with the Eagles as Jonathan Anaekwe was called for a travel after gathering the rebound, setting up the bucket by Barner.
Central Methodist (11-8, 4-3 HAAC) shot 61.9 percent (13-of-21) in the first 20 minutes but was 9-of-30 in the second half.
Benedictine (12-5, 4-2 HAAC) shot 50 percent in the second half, but was 1-of-16 (.063) from three-point range and 4-for-9 from the charity stripe.
Stevens led the way for the Ravens with 11 points and five rebounds, while Wallrapp added 10 points and a game-high eight rebounds. Harris also chipped in with 10 points and five rebounds.
Black was the only Eagle in double figures with 16 points to go along with four assists and three rebounds.
Eric Franklin added nine points and a game-high six assists for the Green and Black. Barner tallied eight points.
The Eagles recorded 17 assists compared to only seven by the Ravens.
Central Methodist returns to Puckett Fieldhouse for Student Night on Thursday, Jan. 17, for a conference matchup against Culver-Stockton. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. CT.