Alva, Okla. (January 12, 2012) - It seemed like a three point shooting contest on Thursday night, and it was the Golden Eagles that came out ahead with the 104-101 overtime win behind 31 points from junior Abel Galliguez.
With the win, the Golden Eagles move to 13-4 overall and 5-4 in the Sooner Athletic Conference.
Despite getting off to a slow start in the first half, JBU got hot from long distance and led 46-32 at halftime.
NOSU (7-8, 4-4 SAC), however, wouldn’t lie down and fought their way back into the contest and managed to take a two point, 64-62, lead with 8:26 left in regulation.
Down seven with 1:41 to go in the game, things began to get interesting for JBU. On JBU’s next possession, Galliguez converted a three point play to make 85-81, but NOSU’s Jonathan Freemyer continued his strong performance and scored to push it back to six, 87-81. Freemyer finished with a team high 30 points.
With 45 seconds left, however, Galliguez came down and drilled a three making it 87-84. After a JBU timeout, the Golden Eagles chose to foul instead of letting NOSU run time off the clock. NOSU’s Marshall Bell knocked down both freebies to push it back to five, 89-84. But Galliguez struck again with his seventh trey of the night to pull within two, 89-87.
Another JBU foul sent NOSU’s Tyler Inman to the line where he went 1-of-2 opening the door for JBU to force OT. Freshman Max Hopfgartner grabbed the rebound off the free-throw miss, and junior Coleson Rakestraw pushed it up the floor to junior EJ McWoods who let it fly from deep to tie things up at 90. McWoods finished with a season high 18 points, five rebounds, and six assists.
NOSU had one final chance to take the win, but Daryl Glover missed his two point attempt as time expired.
In overtime, both teams went back and forth in the opening minutes, but Galliguez drilled is eighth three of the night to give JBU a 98-93 cushion with three minutes remaining. He finished the night 8-of-15 from long distance, one trey short of tying the JBU single game record for threes. NOSU responded with a pair of buckets from Freemyer and Jeremy Felton, but McWoods answered on the inside to give JBU a three point edge with under one minute to go.
Over the next few possessions both teams traded free-throws, but it was JBU’s Thomas Galliguez that sealed the deal with clutch freebies knocking down 4-of-4 from the charity stripe in the closing seconds to seal the win. Thomas finished with nine points.
JBU also had big nights from senior Adrian Miller who finished with 14 points, and freshman Jared Johnson with 12.
JBU’s last win in Alva was during the 2004-2005 season, but head Clark Sheehy said that he’s glad the team was able to break that streak and get the victory.
“I’m proud of the way our guys responded through adversity tonight,” said Sheehy. “With Andy being gone tonight [due to the loss of a family member] it was tough. When one member of the team is hurting we all are affected. But during one of the timeouts, I told the guys just how proud I was of them win or lose. But it feels much better to walk out of here with a win.”
For the game, JBU shot 50.7 percent (34-of-67) from the floor including 46.9 percent (15-of-32) from downtown. NOSU, meanwhile, knocked down 52.2 percent (35-of-67) of their attempts including 35.9 percent (14-of-39) from long range. JBU was out rebounded 38-34, but a major difference maker came at the charity stripe where JBU shot 75 percent (21-of-28) compared to 63 percent (17-of-27) from NOSU.
JBU won’t have long to revel in the victory as they are back to business on Saturday when Oklahoma Christian comes to town. Game time is set for 5 p.m. in Bill George Arena.