BATESVILLE, AR (LYON) – With eight seconds left and the score tied at 66 between the Lyon men’s basketball team and Crowley’s Ridge (Ark.), Ty Virden drove to the basket – fighting off a defender, and gave the Scots a 68-66 thrilling overtime victory with a layup at the buzzer Monday evening inside Becknell Gymnasium.
Joe Burt scored a season high 27 points to lead Lyon and Riley Jenkins added 16. The victory moves the Scots up to 4-6 on the season, while the Pioneers fall to 5-8 on the year.
BY THE NUMBERS
41.3 – Lyon shot 41.3 percent from the floor including 10-for-21 in the second half and overtime period for 47.6 percent. Crowley’s Ridge was held to 35.9 percent from the field – the second straight game a Lyon opponent has failed to reach 40.0 percent.
20 – Braden Wendel, Justas Narusas and Virden combined for 20 rebounds for the Scots. Wendel had a team high eight, while Narusas and Virden each grabbed six.
80.0 – A majority of Burt’s points in the game from the charity stripe as he went 16-for-20 for 80.0 percent in the game.
8 – Lyon accumulated a season high eight blocked shots in the win. Narusas, John Nekonchuk, and Virden had two apiece.
4 – Jenkins had another outstanding night from beyond the arc knocking down four three-pointers in the game. The Norwood, Mo., native has now totaled 28 three-pointers on the season.
SAY WHAT?! (Head Coach Chad Tapp)
On the team finishing and the big win
“We got off to a bad start in the first half as we weren’t cutting or moving. We had talked for a while to give ourselves a chance to stay in the game with our defense and we did that. In the second half we had some turnovers, which didn’t help us offensively but once again our defense kept us in it. I think it’s huge for us to step up and win as sometimes for young guys it’s a backbreaker to give up a lead, but they did a good job to stick with it and fight back.”
On Joe Burt and Riley Jenkins’ performances
“Joe does a good job and he’s a tough kid. With it being the third game in five days it’s a tough deal for him to stay in the game for a long time. Riley made some shots tonight – making three three-pointers off dribble penetration. I’m really pleased with these guys’ defensively and ability to fight back and not get discouraged with the losing streak and how we were up 58-50 tonight.”
On the call in the timeout to draw up a play to win the game
“I think we had tried to go with Joe a couple times and he was out of gas. Ty was the guy we were trying to go down to and isolate as their post player had four fouls. It’s what we drew up and the play was executed the way we had planned and I think a lot of it is in the character of these guys.”
Lyon struggled a bit early falling behind 17-9 at the 12:23 mark of the first half. The Scots made a comeback to tie the game at 19 with just over seven minutes to play – and would later close the half out on a 10-3 run after trailing 24-21. The Scots took a 31-27 lead into the locker room.
In the second half, both teams traded baskets early and Lyon clanged to a small lead throughout. The Scots led 53-45 with five minutes to play, but the Pioneers cut it to three, 53-50 at the 3:46 mark. On the next play Burt hit a big three-pointer followed by a layup from Cash Krueger as Lyon held a 58-50 lead with two and a half minutes to play. Crowley’s Ridge was able to withstand the run and tie the game at 58 after two consecutive three-pointers and another basket. After Virden hit two free throws to give Lyon a 60-58 lead with 26 seconds left, the Pioneers’ Shaquille Culbreath went up and under to tie the game again and send it into overtime.
The overtime period was the most thrilling of the game as both teams did not back down. Narusas made a three-pointer for the first points of the extra period, but Crowley’s Ridge scored six straight points – grabbing a 66-63 lead at the 2:17 mark. With just under two minutes left, Jenkins connected on his final three-pointer of the game tying it at 66. After a failed possession by the Pioneers, the Scots took a timeout with eight seconds to go. Virden then got the ball at the elbow of the free throw line and drove toward the basket for a layup to raise the Scots to victory.
WHAT’S AHEAD FOR THE SCOTS
Lyon hits the road for an away game at Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.) on Dec. 31. Tipoff for the contest is scheduled for 4 p.m.