Jake Spurgeon hit a deep 3-pointer with 0.1 seconds remaining to give Nebraska Wesleyan a dramatic 69-68 overtime victory over arch rival Doane College in GPAC men's basketball action on Wednesday night (Jan. 7) at Snyder Arena.
NWU (7-6, 3-3 GPAC) trailed by two points with the ball and under 10 seconds to play. With time running out on the clock, Spurgeon had the ball near halfcourt when he took two dribbles and nailed a 27-foot shot for the victory.
The win ends the Prairie Wolves six-game losing streak and evens their GPAC record at 3-3. Doane remains winless in the conference at 0-6 and falls to 7-11 overall.
Spurgeon was just 4-12 from the field on the night, but he hit three big shots down the end. NWU was trailing by four with 28 seconds left in regulation when he hit a big three to pull within one. After Doane converted a pair of free throws, Spurgeon stepped up again and drailed a 3-pointer from the corner with 12 seconds remaining to tie the game.
Doane had a chance to win the game in regulation, but a 3-point attempt by Tyler Weatherholt was blocked by Ryan Thramer with 1 second left. The Tigers tried to inbound the ball but could not get a shot off.
Another big highlight of the game came with 2:05 to play and the game tied at 62-62 in overtime. NWU was attempting to inbound the ball from the side and Spurgeon lobbed the ball towards the rim from out-of-bounds and Dylan Aylward went up to the rim and slammed home the alley-oop to give NWU a two-point lead.
Jake Johnson came right back for Doane to hit a 3-pointer to go up by one, Aylward hit a pair of free throws to take the lead back, then Johnson hit a pair of free throws to put Doane up 67-66 with 51 seconds to play.
Doane extended the lead to two points when Brett McFarland hit 1-2 free throws to set up the game-winner by Spurgeon.
The game was tied 10 times and the lead changed 13 different times during the contest.
NWU had four players in double figures led by Aylward who had 19 points off the bench. Ryan Thramer scored 13 points, Spurgeon had 12 on 4-8 from 3-point range and Lee Hullman scored 10.
Doane was led by Jake Johnson who had 23 points going 8-8 from the free throw line. As a team the Tigers were 29-32 from the free throw line, with two misses coming in overtime.