Men's Basketball Wins First Game of the Season in Dramatic Fashion, Defeats Western Illinois 69-60 in Overtime
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Sophomore Anthony Breeze’s (Greenville, S.C./Greenville) tip-in with two seconds remaining sent the game into overtime and the Coastal Carolina University men’s basketball team (1-4) outscored Western Illinois (1-5) 9-0 in overtime to defeat the Leathernecks 69-60 in the Global Sports Classic at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nev.Coastal Carolina earns its first win of the season by outscoring Western Illinois 11-3 in the last of regulation.
Western Illinois took its largest lead of the game (52-42) on a layup from Ceola Clark at in the second half, but a three-pointer from junior Mario Edwards (Massillon, Ohio/Chipola J.C.) at cut the lead to to six at .Western Illinois would extend its lead to eight points on two separate occasions before the Chants caught fire.Redshirt junior Logan Johnson (Knoxville, Tenn./South Doyle) connected on an old-fashion three-point play to cut the Leatherneck lead to 57-52 at .Coastal Carolina traded a WIU free throw for an Edwards three at .Breeze then got a rebound off a miss from redshirt junior Joseph Harris (Lejeune, N.C./Lejeune) and made the layup to make it 58-57 with left.David DuBois, Western’s leading scorer, made a layup at to extend the lead back to three, but on the next possession, Johnson was fouled.He made 1-of-2 free throws and Breeze got the rebound after his second shot missed.Coastal Carolina took two 30-second timeouts and got a play in.Harris missed a layup but Breeze tip-in the miss, tying the game at 60.A desperation three from WIU missed and the game would go to overtime.
Coastal Carolina controlled the overtime, shutting out the Leathernecks on nine WIU field-goal attempts.Johnson’s layup at gave the Chants its first lead since the opening seconds of the second half.Breeze was fouled after a Leatherneck turnover and made both free throws at .Breeze then had a rebound and a layup at for a six-point Chant lead.Coastal Carolina iced the win on two free throws from senior Steven Sexton (Monticello, Ky./Wayne County) with 16 seconds remaining.
It was the Joseph Harris show for most of the game as the Lejeune, N.C., native scored 27 points, four off a career high, and added 13 rebounds for his 13th career double-double.Harris also eclipsed the 500-career rebound mark, becoming the 49th player in Big South history to have 500 or more caroms.
Harris scored Coastal Carolina’s first six points of the game and after senior Mario Sisinni’s (Orlando, Fla./Dr. Phillips) three at 16:27, the Chants had a 9-4 lead.Western Illinois would come right back with a 5-0 run to take a 10-9 lead at .The Leathernecks would have as much as a four-point lead in the first half, but the Chants would take a 17-15 lead at 11:13 on a Breeze tip-in. The action went back-and-forth in the first half with five ties.Coastal Carolina would take a 26-24 halftime lead on a Harris jumper at remaining.
Western Illinois would come out firing to start the second half, as Josh Rivers and David Nurse hit three-pointers to give WIU a 30-26 lead.The Chants would come back to tie the game at 38-38 at 13:35 on a Harris layup but Western Illinois would go on a 14-4 run the next 6:28 for the 10-point lead, its largest of the game.
Breeze was Coastal Carolina’s second player in double figures in scoring with 14 points, nine of which came in the last of regulation and in overtime.Edwards had a team-high four assists, while Harris also had two blocks and three steals.
Rivers, a Las Vegas native, led the Leathernecks with 18 points and three assists.DuBois added 12 points despite being in foul trouble for much of the game.
Coastal Carolina shot 55.8 percent from the field and 17-of-28 from the free-throw line (60.7 percent).Coastal Carolina also had a 36-20 rebounding average and had 34 points in the paint.
Coastal Carolina will now play the winner of Texas-Pan American/North Carolina A&T Saturday, Nov. 29 at on the final day of the Global Sports Classic.
-Coastal Carolina broke a seven-game losing streak dating back to last year.
-It was Coastal Carolina’s first win in an in-season tournament since its 74-70 win over Marist Nov. 22, 2003.
-Harris is now point away in the Florida State game from having three double-doubles in the first five games.
-Breeze was one-point off a season high in points.