Bluejay men win at the buzzer

With 7 seconds to go, Brent Jackson?makes his third three-point basket in the final 1:40 to bring Tabor within 80-79 of Oklahoma Wesleyan Saturday. Nick Sauer later drained a three-point buzzer-beater to give the Bluejays the 82-81 victory.The Tabor men?s basketball team split two games last week, ending with a last-second win over 13th-ranked Oklahoma Wesleyan Univer?sity.
OWU?Tabor hosted the 13th-ranked Eagles Saturday, just 11 days after enduring a one-point loss to OWU on their home court on a last-second basket. This time, it was Tabor?s turn, clinching an 82-81 victory on a three-point buzzer-beater by Nick Sauer.
?It was a team win,??coach Micah Ratzlaff said. ?Guys made big shots, and it doesn?t get any closer than that.?
Tabor trailed, 38-34, at halftime, but Ratzlaff was pleased with the Bluejays? first-half efforts.
?We came out, played well,? he said. ?First half was a pretty clean game. (OWU) shot almost 53 percent in the first half. We were trying to guard them. We tried our zone; we tried our man.
?It was a good game both ways, and then we got stuck coming out in the second half. We got stuck and they were rolling.?
The Eagles built a 75-65 lead with just over 3 minutes to play. But the Bluejays narrowed the gap to 76-69 on a basket by Robbie Samuel with 2:30 to go.
Brent Jackson followed with the first of three three-point baskets in the final 1:40, allowing Tabor to draw to within 76-72.
The Bluejays sent the Eagles to the charity stripe and faced a 78-72 deficit with 52 seconds left.
After the teams traded one free throw each, Jackson hit the second three-pointer with 18.6 seconds remaining. Tabor called a timeout, trailing 79-76.
The Eagles extended the lead with a free throw, but Jackson drained a third three-point basket with 7 seconds on the clock to bring Tabor to within 80-79.
?Brent Jackson came up huge, which put us in position to be able to use all of our timeouts,? Ratzlaff said. ?Brent?s kind of one of those guys that when the game?s on the line, he actually relaxes.?
Again, Tabor sent the Eagles to the charity stripe, where OWU made one of two attempts for an 81-79 lead with 5.6 seconds left.
JT Nemit took the ball downcourt, then passed to Sauer, who drained the winning three-pointer at the buzzer for the win.
?(Nick?s) our hero since he made the very last shot, but he played well,??Ratzlaff said. ?He shot the ball well. We haven?t shot from the three as well as we did this game all year long. It was good to do that at home.?
Jackson finished with a game-high 22 points. Lance Carter added 18 and Sauer 11. Andrew Thomas chipped in 12 rebounds.
With the win, Tabor improved to 3-1 overall.
?Down the stretch, we just didn?t give up,? Ratzlaff said. ?We used absolutely everything we had, player-wise, timeout-wise, and just didn?t quit. Good things happen if you don?t quit.?
Central Missouri State?Tabor lost to Central Missouri Wednesday, 87-51. Tabor shot 37 percent from the field, compared to just under 53 percent for Central Missouri.
Lance Carter led Tabor with 16 points.
Coming?Tabor will compete in the Warrior Classic hosted by Sterling College this weekend.
The Bluejays will face No. 7 William Penn Friday at 4 p.m. and follow with a 4 p.m. contest Saturday against Johnson and Wales.

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