Stevenson Steals Victory from Spartans' Grasp

   YORK, PA-In a game that had a little bit of everything that can occur in a college men’s basketball game, the Stevenson University Mustangs defeated the York College men’s basketball squad 104-92 in four overtimes at the Grumbacher Sport & Fitness Center on Saturday night. The Spartans have their modest two game win streak snapped as they fall to 3-5 and 1-1 in the league. The Mustangs picked up their second win in three games as the improve to 2-6 overall and 1-1 in the conference.
    The game featured a 20-point Spartan lead, a strong Mustang comeback, an apparent game-winning basket with .6 seconds left that didn’t end the the game and four thrilling overtimes.
    In the third overtime the stage was set for an unbelievable ending as Spartan freshman Matt Moley (York, Pa./West York) tied the game at 80 on a jumper off a loose ball with five seconds left. Mustang guard Chaise Lancaster collected the in bounds and raced the length of the court, hitting what appeared to be the game-winning lay up with .6 seconds showing on the clock. Members of the Stevenson bench ran onto to court to celebrate what looked like a sure win but were assessed a technical foul, giving York the opportunity to tie the game. Junior Nick Brady (Hanover, Pa./Delone Catholic) tied the game with a pair of technical free throws to force the fourth overtime.
    The fourth extra session was all Mustangs as the two teams traded buckets before the Mustangs finished the game on a 13-1 run including key threes from Lancaster and Andy Shelley.
    In the first half, the Spartans went on an 11-1 run, turning a 9-9 tie into a 20-10 lead midway through the half. That margin eventually grew to 20 at 41-21 with 4:39 remaining in the half. In what proved to be a big part of what allowed Stevenson to come back later in the game, the Mustangs used the final 3:53 to cut the Spartan advantage back to 13 prior to the half. The Spartans’ dynamic freshman point guard Julian Watson (Odenton, Md./Arundel) spent a large part of the first half on the bench with foul trouble thanks to a pair of quick fouls. It looked like the Spartans would weather the storm but a few turnovers late in the half helped kick start the Mustangs’ late first half surge.
    The second half saw the Spartans’ shooting cool off significantly. York shot 50% in the first half but just 28% in the second. More importantly for York, for the first time this year, they struggled from the free throw line where they entered the game shooting 73.8% for the year from the line. In the decisive second half, the York went just 9-for-16 (56.3%) while the Mustangs were 8-for-10 (80%) from the line.
    The Spartans held onto their lead for most of the second half until Greg Woody hit a lay up with 5:34 left in regulation. The two squads would then have four more ties and three lead changes en route to the extra sessions. After Greg Collins hit a lay up with 2:06 left, sophomore Dylan Hoffman (Dallastown, Pa./Dallastown) tied the game and forced overtime with a jumper in the lane 1:05 left. Stevenson had the ball for the final possession but could not convert as the teams headed for extra work.
    In the first overtime, Watson appeared to ice the game with a driving lay up with 34 seconds left but Woody hit a dead eye three with seven seconds left, tying the game at 78 as the game moved to a second overtime.
    The second overtime was short on offense as York scored on a Hoffman lay up off the tap and the Mustangs had two free throws in five minutes to extend the game to a third overtime.
    Woody led the Mustangs as he poured in a game-high 30 points while he also had nine rebounds. Woody scored 15 points in the second half and seven more in the four overtime periods. He was 11-for-23 from the floor including 5-for-9 from three. He also converted three free throws. Lancaster established a new career-high with 24 points as he was 6-for-13 from the floor and 12-for-17 from the free throw line. He also had seven rebounds, three assists and four steals in 56 minutes of action. Greg Collins added a double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds for the Mustangs. Irvin Jones was the fourth Mustang in double figures with 10 points while he also had three rebounds, three blocked shots, and two assists.
    Brady led the Spartans with a career-high tying 27 points. It is the second consecutive game that Brady reached the mark. He also pulled in a career-high 13 rebounds for the double-double. Brady struggled in the second half as he had 17 points at the break but was held to just 10 points over the final 40 minutes of action. Moley recorded his first collegiate double-double with a pair of career-highs as he had 10 points and 10 rebounds. Junior captain Jeremy Keefer (Palmyra, Pa./Palmyra) also notched a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds. He chipped in with four assists, a steal and a blocked shot. Sophomore Andrew Pawlyk (Bernville, Pa./Tulpehocken) also established a new career-high with 13 rebounds while he tied his career-high with eight points. Freshman Paul Kouvaris (Baltimore, Md./Cardinal Gibbons) came off the bench with a strong performance as he had 10 points, eight rebounds, and three assists in 27 minutes of work.
    The Spartans established a pair of school records as their 100 shots attempted in a game and their 75 rebounds were both new standards. York finished the game shooting 34% from the floor including 17.4% from three. The Green and White finished the game shooting 60.6% (20-of-33) from the free throw line while Stevenson was 29-for-42 (69%) from the stripe. Stevenson shot 39.5% from the floor and 43.8% from distance.    
    The game is the longest in the three-year history of the Grumbacher Center and is the longest game in Stevenson University history.
    York returns to action on Tuesday evening when they close out their fall semester portion of the schedule with a trip to Salisbury University. Tip time at the Maggs Center is set for 8:00 pm.


Julian Watson photo courtesy of Brent Duffy