Last-Minute Heroics Lift AU Men Over Northwood, 64-63

Last-Minute Heroics Lift AU Men Over Northwood, 64-63


THE TURNING POINT: Trailing 63-57 in the last 90 seconds of the game, Ashland scored seven unanswered points for the victory.

STAT OF THE GAME: The Eagles have won 21 of their last 31 games away from Kates Gymnasium.

Late-and-close is exactly the way Ashland University's men's basketball team likes its games.

Losing 63-57 in the final 90 seconds of regulation on Saturday (Dec. 3) afternoon at Northwood, the Eagles scored seven consecutive points to take a 64-63 decision over the Timberwolves. AU is 6-1 overall and 2-0 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, while Northwood is 1-8, 1-1.

The Eagles made one last move in the game's last minute and a half thanks to five quick points from senior guard Boo Osborne to cut the deficit to 63-62 with 42 ticks remaining. Junior forward Marsalis Hamilton pilfered a much-needed steal with 20 seconds left, then made both free throws two seconds later to put Ashland up 64-63.

Hamilton then grabbed the final rebound as time ran off for the AU victory.

Ashland has won five consecutive road games decided by six points or less.

Both Osborne and junior center Teddy Metzen each scored 12 points in the victory, Metzen doing so going 6-for-6 from the field. Hamilton added 10 points, six rebounds, two steals and two assists.

Senior forward Torin Wetzel came off the bench for seven points and six boards in the victory.

The Eagles turned the ball over nine times, and won despite a 40-30 Timberwolves rebounding advantage.

A close first half saw Northwood take a 21-15 lead, but Ashland stayed within striking distance until Osborne hit a triple to put the Eagles on top 27-25 with 3:50 left until halftime.

At the break, Ashland had a 32-27 advantage after finishing the half on a 17-6 run. The Eagles shot 52 percent from the floor and allowed just 34.3 percent to the Timberwolves in the game's first 20 minutes.

Led by Metzen's six quick points, Ashland extended its lead early in the second half to 40-31. Northwood, however, had an answer, scoring nine straight points before sophomore guard Nick Bapst's layup put the brakes on the Timberwolves' streak.

The Eagles led 52-45 inside of the 11-minute mark of the second half, but again, Northwood countered, scoring 11 points in a row to take a 56-52 lead with 5:13 remaining in regulation.

Ashland trailed 56-55 with 4:32 to go, and was stuck on 55 points for almost the next three minutes. That, however, set up the Eagles' late-game heroics.

UP NEXT: The 2016-17 GLIAC home opener on Thursday (Dec. 8) at 7:30 p.m. vs. No. 2-ranked Saginaw Valley State (8-0, 2-0).