High Point Escapes The Citadel, 80-72, in Overtime Thriller
Charleston, S.C.- The Citadel's Mike Groselle posted his sixth straight double-double (15 points, 13 rebounds), but it was High Point's Nick Barbour that made the difference in overtime, as the Panthers emerged with an 80-72 overtime victory at the Millis Athletic and Convocation Center on Saturday evening. Groselle was joined by teammates Lawrence Miller (14 points), Ashton Moore (12 points) and Marshall Harris III (10 points), who all reached double figures.
The Citadel (2-3) converted 10 3-pointers in the contest behind the tandem of Moore (4-9) and Miller (3-8). Also knocking down long range shots for the Dogs were Barry Smith (1-4), Cosmo Morabbi (1-3) and Harris III (1-4). As a unit, the Cadets managed 27-for-70 (38.6%), 10-for-30 (33.3%) from 3-point range and knocked down 8-of-13 (61.5%) of their free throws. Groselle (7-13) was one of four Bulldogs, along with Harris III (4-9), Miller (4-10) and Moore (4-12), to finish with four or more made field goals. Harris III dished out six assists in the contest, marking the third time in his five career contest that he has eclipsed the six-assist plateau. Groselle's seven offensive rebounds were instrumental in giving The Citadel a 17-9 edge in second chance points.
The trio of Xavier Martin (21 points), Barbour (20 points) and Corey Law (13 points) carried the Panthers offensively. High Point managed 27-of-59 (45.8%) from the field, including 7-of-15 from 3-point range. The difference came from the charity stripe, which HPU visited on 31 occasions, knocking down 19 shots. Law crashed the boards for a game-high 15 rebounds, giving himself a double-double, while teammate Devante Wallace hauled in 10 rebounds, three offensively. HPU improved to 2-3 overall on the season following the victory.
Eight Citadel points in the first 2:10 of the second half, including key 3-pointers by Morabbi and Smith, erased a four-point High Point halftime advantage and knotted the game at 36-36. The Panthers answered quickly with a long range 3-pointer by Barbour, sparking a 10-0 run, making for a 46-36 contest at the 14:17 mark.
The Bulldog freshmen backcourt of Harris III and Miller, unfazed by the Panthers defense, answered with consecutive 3-pointers to pull The Citadel within four, 46-42, just over a minute later.
The two teams traded baskets as the lead bounced between five and seven points before a 3-pointer by Miller and alley-oop dunk by Smith sliced the margin to 56-51 with 4:50 remaining.
A strong defensive stand, along with a pair of free throws by Miller and Bo Holston drew the Dogs within one point, 56-55, with 3:22 to go on the clock. High Point scored five of the game's next seven points to move in front 61-57, but a pair of 3-pointers by Miller and Moore gave The Citadel a 63-62 edge with 43 seconds remaining.
Law responded with an old-fashioned three-point play, moving the Panthers in front by two, before a running jumper in the lane by Harris sent the game to overtime deadlocked at 65.
Barbour and Martin forged High Point to victory in the overtime with 10 and five points, respectively. The Citadel countered with two points each from Holston, Miller and Smith, but it was Barbour's 7-of-10 performance from the free-throw line proved to be the difference in the 80-72 victory.
Behind seven points from Groselle and six by Moore, The Citadel closed the first half within four points, 32-28, of the Panthers. Despite a scoring drought that spanned 3:34 of the frame, the Dogs hit 11-of-31 (35.5%) from the field, including three from beyond the arc. The Bulldogs also posted 18 rebounds, led by Groselle who hauled in five.
The Citadel led on two occasions in the early stages of the game, the first coming at the 14:12 mark when Moore buried a long range 3-pointer on an assist from Harris III to assume the 10-8 advantage. High Point quickly answered with a bucket by Devante Wallace to knot the game at 1(0-10, before CJ Bray stepped just outside the paint to net his first points of the game and give the Dogs a two-point advantage.
The Panthers retaliated with an 8-2 run, highlighted by a pair of 3-point buckets by Barbour and Martin to assume a 22-14 lead at the 10:17 mark of the half. Just under a minute later Moore answered with his second 3-pointer of the half, making for a five-point Panthers lead, 22-17.
The Bulldogs defense forced a missed opportunity for HPU, allowing Groselle to work his way through the paint and trim the lead to 22-19. The Panthers took advantage of Citadel miscues to stretch the lead to 27-20 at the 6:52 mark, before a layup by Harris III made again pulled the Dogs within five.
Shine and Law combined to score the next five points for the Panthers, who lead 32-26 with 2:13 left in the half, but it was four points by Miller and two from Harris III that pulled The Citadel within four at the intermission.
The Bulldogs open Southern Conference play on Dec. 1 when they head to crosstown rival College of Charleston at 7 p.m. Two days later they head to the Upstate to face rival Wofford in a 3:00 p.m. contest. For more information on Bulldog Basketball, visit the official website of The Citadel Athletics at www.CitadelSports.com.