Tabor men outlast Oklahoma Wesleyan in overtime, 92-91

Julian Winton
Julian Winton
The Tabor College men’s team held on down the stretch to earn a 92-91 overtime victory over Oklahoma Wesleyan in the KCAC tournament quarterfinals Wednesday.

The teams had faced each other four days prior, with Tabor earning a 94-67 win. This time, however, the game was highly contested.

Between the two teams, 69 three-point attempts were taken. Tabor made 14 of its 33 attempts from beyond the arc, led by Alan Urrutia who was 5-for-6 from three-point range. Urrutia’s fifth three-pointer with 16:35 left in regulation gave Tabor a 50-48 edge, its first lead since 11-10.

The Eagles won the battle on the glass in the first half, outrebounding Tabor, 19-14. Tabor also committed more turnovers: 12 to Oklahoma Wesleyan’s seven. Although the Bluejays made 56 percent of their first-half attempts (15-for-27), the Eagles attempted 11 more shots and recorded 50-percent accuracy in the half (19-for-38).

Those factors contributed to a 46-42 Oklahoma Wesleyan lead at intermission, despite the fact that Tabor had jumped to a five-point lead early, 11-6. A 9-0 Eagle run put the visitors ahead by four, and Oklahoma Wesleyan maintained its lead the rest of the first half, leading by as many as 28-17 at the 8:30 mark.

Tabor stayed in the game by making nine of 16 three-point attempts in the first half, including seven in the final 7:31.

The Bluejays outscored the Eagles 10-2 to start the second half to take the lead, 52-48, and Tabor led by as many as 59-54 before a 6-0 Eagle run once again left the Bluejays trailing. Again Tabor built a five-point lead, only to have Oklahoma Wesleyan regain a slight advantage.

The Eagles led by two, 77-75, with 2:29 to play, and the teams locked heads at 79 with 48 seconds left in regulation. Tullio Parry made one of two free-throws, then the Eagles turned the ball over and fouled, sending Lance Carter to the line. He made both attempts to put Tabor in front, 82-79, with 10 seconds to play. However, a buzzer-beating three-pointer by the game’s leading scorer, Breiman Alexander, sent the game into overtime.

Tabor did not trail by more than two in the extra period. With Tabor behind, 88-87, Julian Winton scored to ignite a 5-0 run that put Tabor in front, 92-88, with 20 seconds to go. Alexander drained a three-pointer with 10 seconds left to bring the Eagles within 92-91, then Tabor turned it over, giving Alexander a shot at a game-winning three, but the attempt missed its mark.

Winton led the Bluejay scoring effort with 24 points. Carter scored 22 and had 11 rebounds. Urrutia scored 15 points and Parry 10.

Coming—Tabor will host Southwestern in semifinal action Saturday at 2 p.m. The Moundbuilders come into the game after a 77-69 victory over Friends. The winner will play either Ottawa or York in the championship Monday at 6 p.m. at Hartman Arena.

Ottawa knocked off Saint Mary Wednesday, 81-79, while York defeated Bethany, 99-97.

For scores and updates during games, follow Janae on Twitter @janaerem13