Posted: January 27, 2010
LEWISBURG, Pa. – Lehigh saw a 10-point lead with 3:22 remaining in regulation evaporate and the Mountain Hawks were eventually outlasted 81-76 in overtime by the Bucknell Bison on Wednesday evening at Sojka Pavilion. Lehigh had one last shot in regulation to try and win the game, but senior Marquis Hall’s three-point attempt rimmed out and the teams headed for the extra session where the Bison outscored the Brown and White 14-9. Hall led Lehigh with a season-high 21 points, while freshman C.J. McCollum added 20 but it was not enough as the Mountain Hawks fall to 13-8 overall and 4-2 in the Patriot League. With the win Bucknell ups its record to 8-14 overall and 3-3 in the league.
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Lehigh shot 48% for the game and placed four players in double figures with senior Zahir Carrington (14) and freshman Gabe Knutson (13) joining Hall and McCollum. Hall dished out six assists on the evening as he becomes the first player in Patriot League history with 1,300 points and 500 assists for his career. The Oregon native also led the Brown and White with six rebounds, while Knutson, McCollum and senior Dave Buchberger pulled down four boards apiece. The Mountain Hawks only got three points from their bench, while Bucknell received 34 points from its non- starters.
Four Bison hit for double figures including G.W. Boon (18), Mike Muscala (16), Patrick Behan (14) and Darryl Shazier (13). Bucknell shot 47% from the field and 84% at the free throw line. Muscala posted a double-double with ten rebounds, while Shazier handed out a game-high seven assists. Bucknell committed only 11 turnovers for the game and scored 12 second chance points to Lehigh’s two.
“This was a hard fought, emotional contest played between two very good basketball teams,” Lehigh head coach Brett Reed said afterwards. “Give Bucknell credit; they never stopped fighting and were able to force the overtime period.” He continued, “I thought Bucknell had a number of players step up down the stretch. G.W. Boon is a talented player who is coming off a very strong performance for them in his last game and he was able to carry that over into tonight. There are no easy games in the Patriot League, particularly on the road, and now we have to re-group quickly and get ready for Holy Cross this weekend.”
Bucknell opened the game on a 10-4 run in the first 4:27, but Lehigh scored the game’s next three points to pull within 10- 7. A basket by Behan followed by a Joe Willman jumper gave the home team a 14-7 advantage, while G.W. Boon’s lay-up at the 12:58 mark put Lehigh in a 16-9 hole. A three by senior captain Matt Shamis pulled Lehigh within two at 16-14, while Hall’s lay-up with 9:47 to go before halftime tied things up at 16. Hall’s three-pointer at the 6:47 mark brought Lehigh to within a point at 20-19, while McCollum’s three two minutes later gave the Mountain Hawks their first lead of the night at 22-21. That basket marked the beginning of 14 straight for Lehigh’s freshman standout as he caught fire in the final minutes of the half. His basket with 3:35 to go gave Lehigh a three-point edge and also pushed Hall’s career assist total to 500.
McCollum got open for another three, this one coming with 52 seconds to go and made the score 32-31 in favor of the Bison, but two free throws by Behan gave the home team a 34-31 lead. McCollum answered with yet another basket, this one coming just before the buzzer and Lehigh went to the locker room down just a point, 34-33.
McCollum scored 14 points in the half, all of which came in the final 4:38. The Ohio native beat the first half buzzer with a fall back jumper as he used a series of dribble moves to free himself from a Bucknell defender and rise up for the jumper. McCollum sank six-of-ten shots, including two-of-two from downtown, while Knutson added six points on three-of-four shooting. As a team the Mountain Hawks shot 50% from the floor (14-of- 28) and 57% from three-point range, but they only got the foul line three times. McCollum led the Brown and White with three rebounds, while Hall dished out four of his assists. 30 of Lehigh’s 33 points in the half came from its starters, with Shamis scoring the other three on a trifecta from the right wing.
Muscala and Behan scored eight points apiece in the half as the Bison also shot an even 50% from the floor (13-of- 26). Bucknell got to the foul line ten times where it sank eight attempts, but the Bison were 0-of-6 from beyond the arc. Muscala also led the home team with six rebounds and Shazier and Cohen handed out two assists each.
The teams stayed close for the first ten minutes of the second half before Lehigh went on a 13-0 run over the span of 3:25 that was capped by a Buchberger three-pointer that banked in and gave the Mountain Hawks a 62-51 lead with 7:31 remaining. A jumper by McCollum with 3:22 to go gave Lehigh a ten-point bulge, but Bucknell scored the final ten points of regulation including a pair of free throws from Muscala with 30 ticks on the clock, which tied the game at 67. Hall then took the inbounds pass and dribbled down court before Lehigh called a timeout. Coming out of the timeout the Mountain Hawks put the ball in Hall’s hands and his last second shot attempt was close, but fell off the rim and sent the teams into an extra session.
Knutson opened the overtime with a pair of free throws on Lehigh’s first possession, but Boon hit a huge three-pointer at the three-minute mark to give the Bison a 70-69 lead. Another three by Boon, this one coming with 1:29 remaining gave the home team a 73-69 lead but Carrington got inside for a basket and Lehigh was within two with 1:12 to go. After a pair of free throws and a jumper by Shazier sandwiched around two free throws from Hall, the score was 77-73 in favor of the Bison, but Lehigh came down and Hall drilled an off-balance three to bring the Mountain Hawks within a point. Shazier got fouled on the ensuing in-bounds pass and calmly sank two more free throws to give the Bison a 79-76 advantage and Lehigh had a chance to tie in the final seconds. The Mountain Hawks eventually turned the ball over and two more free throws by Muscala provided the final five-point margin.
Lehigh stays on the road and heads to Worcester, Massachusetts on Sunday afternoon for a showdown with the preseason Patriot League favorite, the Holy Cross Crusaders. Tip-off from the Hart Center is set for 12:05 and all of the action will be broadcast live on ESPN Radio 1230 and 1320 as well as Lehighsports.com with Matt Kerr and Jeff Tourial calling the action. The game will also be shown live on CBS College Sports with Bob Socci and John Feinstein.
Lehigh - Bucknell Post-Game Show