Bison End Season With 72-71 Overtime Loss at Western Michigan
Release: March 20, 2013
KALAMAZOO, Mich. - Connar Tava's two free throws with 13.9 seconds left in overtime lifted Western Michigan to a 72-71 victory over North Dakota State in the first round of the College Basketball Invitational presented by Buick on Wednesday, March 20.
TrayVonn Wright scored a career-high 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds for North Dakota State (24-10), which missed two contested shots in the closing seconds for a chance to win.
Shayne Whittington had 18 points and three blocks for Western Michigan (21-12) and Brandon Pokley added 15 points for the Broncos, who advanced to next Monday's quarterfinal round at Wyoming.
North Dakota State made its first five field goal attempts and scored on its first seven possessions to race out to a 15-2 lead. Pokley had a pair of transition 3-pointers on a 12-4 run to help Western Michigan close within three late in the period.
NDSU led 32-28 at halftime and WMU scored on its first three possessions of the second half to force a 34-34 tie. The Broncos went on an 18-4 run over a span of 9 1/2 minutes to build a 58-47 lead with 4:23 left.
The Bison crawled back into the game employing a full-court pressure defense and holding Western Michigan to just four free throws in the final four minutes of regulation.
Wright's 3-pointer with 1:04 left got the Bison within 62-60, Chris Kading made a block on the other end, and Wright was left open to bury a 16-foot jumper from the elbow tying the game 62-62 with 3.0 seconds left.
Alexander made a 3-pointer on NDSU's first overtime possesion and the Bison stayed ahead until Tava's winning free throws with 13.9 seconds left.
Both teams shot 42 percent overall. NDSU was 12-for-12 at the foul line and WMU was 20-for-26. The Bison had a 36-34 edge in total rebounds.