SEARCY (HardingSports.com) – Harding junior Hayden Johnson hit two key 3-pointers in overtime to lead the Bisons to a 68-63 victory over 12th-ranked Christian Brothers on Monday at Rhodes Field House.
The victory was Harding's first over a nationally-ranked team at home since the Bisons defeated 15th-ranked North Alabama in 2008.
Harding is 4-0 for the first time since 2009.
Johnson missed his only two 3-point attempts in regulation but connected on one on Harding's first possession of overtime. Christian Brothers answered with a 3-pointer from Pat Graham, but Johnson gave the Bisons the lead for good with his second 3-pointer. It came as the shot clock expired and gave Harding a 65-62 lead at the 1:41 mark.
Christian Brothers (3-1) shot only 1-of-5 in overtime and managed only one free throw the rest of overtime.
Harding senior Zach Roddenberry, who led all Great American Conference players in scoring and rebounding entering the game, had 19 points and 13 rebounds. He hit two free throws with 1:03 left in regulation to send the game into overtime. Roddenberry was 9-of-10 from the free throw line.
Harding fell behind 55-48 with 4:45 left when Christian Brothers' Harry Green hit a jumper on a fast break. Bison senior Bradley Spencer was fouled on drives to the basket on each of Harding's next two possessions. He made 3-of-4 free throws to jumpstart a 9-2 Harding run that Spencer capped off with a layup that tied the game at 57-57.
Spencer tied his season high with 22 points, hitting 10-of-12 from the free throw line.
Green and Graham led Christian Brothers with 15 points each. Green was 7-of-13 from the field and led the Bucs with seven rebounds. Graham had made only four 3-pointers in Christian Brothers' first three games but made 5-of-10 3-pointers and added five rebounds. The rest of the Bucs made only 2-of-14 from 3-point range.
Harding shot only 37 percent (19-of-51) from the field but outscored Christian Brothers 22-8 at the free throw line.
The Bisons will play their fifth of six home games to start the season Thursday against Northeastern State, who will enter the game undefeated in its first five games.