UNCG falls in overtime to Appalachian State, 80-78
For video of coach Mike Dement's postgame comments, click here.
By Rob Daniels
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Omar Carter hit two tie-breaking free throws with 25.2 seconds left in overtime and blocked UNCG's subsequent attempt at forging another draw as Appalachian State held on for an 80-78 win in the Greensboro Coliseum on Wednesday.
Carter, who finished with 26 points on the night, delivered the 13th and final lead change after halftime when he made his freebies after inducing David Williams' fifth foul. Williams, perhaps wary of Carter's 40-percent 3-point shooting, overplayed him up top. Carter seized the chance and drove past his man, drawing contact on an attempted runner in the lane.
He then blocked Kyle Randall's try for the equalizer on the other end. Andre Williamson rebounded for the Mountaineers but missed his two free-throw attempts. That left UNCG with one final chance with 8.4 seconds to play.
Brandon Evans, whose 54 points in the two previous games gave the Spartans another viable scoring option, took the in-bounds pass and was met by Jeremi Booth, who compelled Evans to change directions twice in his drive upcourt. That time-killing effort prevented the senior guard from getting to the basket, and his pull-up jumper at the buzzer struck the front of the rim.
"I was yelling, 'Back up' so (Booth) wouldn't get a foul," Appalachian guard Donald Sims said. "But he did a great job. He slowed his momentum down and forced him into a tough shot. And then Andre came and offered help."
Coach Mike Dement had instructed Evans to take the first good shot regardless of location, but nothing developed.
"No, I didn't get fouled," Evans said. "It was good defense."
The result was the second overtime defeat in a week for UNCG (4-17, 4-7 Southern Conference). Before last Thursday's double-overtime affair at Chattanooga, the Spartans had played 66 games without going past regulation.
The Mountaineers (9-13, 5-7) earned payback for Jan. 13, when the Spartans earned their first victory of the season after 15 defeats, a 75-74 triumph in Boone.
This one resembled a few other UNCG games in that the Spartans had trouble defending without fouling. Williams and Trevis Simpson were disqualified, and Aaron Brackett and Korey Van Dussen were limited by picking up four fouls apiece.
Brackett, who went for a career-high 28 points at Appalachian, was seldom a factor on Wednesday.
"Carter? We just couldn't stop him," Dement said. "He was a takeover player. They made plays to get to the free-throw line. We had two situations – one at the end of regulation and one in overtime – where if we get a stop, we get the last shot. And we didn't get a stop either time."
Center Aloysius Henry came off the bench to score a career-high 26 points for UNCG. The 6-foot-10 junior, held to seven or fewer in each of the previous five outings, responded well in the second game since Dement replaced him with Evans in the name of going with the hot hand and a new-look, three-guard lineup. Henry firmly planted himself on the block, made himself available for entry passes and generally finished his chances. The Mountaineers elected to front Henry and paid for it when four Spartans assisted the big man on lobs.
"I posted up my man and made eye contact with Kyle and he'd toss it in," Henry said. "I would say that by the numbers, yeah, it would very high, but I've had better games."
After missing 13 of their first 17 shots, the Spartans started sizzling offensively and were up eight early in the second half.
They held Appalachian to three consecutive empty trips, but when they failed to convert on the other end, their advantage stagnated. It eventually disappeared altogether.
With a second chance, the Mountaineers came back and set up a period of give-and-take in which the lead changed hands eight times in the final 12 minutes of regulation.
With the game tied at 68 and ASU in possession in the final 30 seconds, the Spartans did force a miss, but when the Mountaineers claimed the rebound, they denied the home team a chance to win it at the other end. Sims' fall-away shot from the left of the key was off target, and they headed to overtime.
UNCG led on four separate occasions in the extra period but could not get the defensive stand necessary to get momentum entirely to itself.
"We're not always going to score 91 points. We're not always going to score 110 points," Dement said, referring to his team's totals in the two previous contests. "We have to get better defensively. We have gotten better defensively, but not to the point where we're making it difficult (for opponents) to get shots."
Appalachian State 80, UNCG 78
APPALACHIAN STATE (9-13, 5-7 SoCon)
CARTER, Omar 10-18 6-6 26; SIMS, Donald 9-22 3-3 23; BOOTH, Jeremi 4-10 4-5 13; HAUSLEY, Petey 3-4 3-4 9; WILLIAMSON, Andre 2-6 1-6 5; WRIGHT, Marcus 1-5 1-2 4; WOODS, Mitch 0-2 0-0 0; HEALY, Nathan 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 29-67 18-26 80.
UNCG (4-17, 4-7 SoCon)
HENRY, Aloysius 11-21 4-6 26; EVANS, Brandon 4-10 7-10 17; RANDALL, Kyle 5-11 0-1 10; SIMPSON, Trevis 4-7 1-2 9; VAN DUSSEN, Korey 3-9 0-0 7; BRACKETT, Aaron 2-4 0-0 4; COLE, Brian 1-2 0-0 3; WILLIAMS, David 1-4 0-0 2; PARKER, Drew 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 31-68 12-19 78.
Appalachian State............. 34 34 12 - 80
UNCG.......................... 38 30 10 - 78
3-point goals--Appalachian State 4-18 (SIMS, Donald 2-9; WRIGHT, Marcus 1-4; BOOTH, Jeremi 1-4; WOODS, Mitch 0-1), UNCG 4-13 (EVANS, Brandon 2-4; VAN DUSSEN, Korey 1-6; COLE, Brian 1-1; WILLIAMS, David 0-1; SIMPSON, Trevis 0-1). Fouled out--Appalachian State-None, UNCG-WILLIAMS, David; SIMPSON, Trevis. Rebounds--Appalachian State 46 (CARTER, Omar 12), UNCG 38 (EVANS, Brandon 11). Assists--Appalachian State 10 (SIMS, Donald 5), UNCG 13 (RANDALL, Kyle 6). Total fouls--Appalachian State 19, UNCG 23. Technical fouls--Appalachian State-None, UNCG-None. A-3372
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