The Morehead State men's basketball team overcame a 21-point deficit against Conference USA opponent Marshall to post a 102-94 overtime win on Sunday afternoon (Nov. 17) in front of 3,506 fans at MSU’s Johnson Arena.
After missing 25 free throws during regulation, the Eagles sank all 14 freebies in overtime.
"Everyone on our team who dressed played a part in this win," Head Coach Sean Woods said. "Give Marshall a lot of credit. They came in and took it to us early, but I am so proud of the resiliency of our team."
The Eagles improve to 3-1, while Marshall slips to 2-1. The Thundering Herd had won four consecutive games against Morehead State with the last Eagle victory (101-100) coming back on Dec. 17, 2002.
Sophomore Brent Arrington and senior Bakari Turner led the Eagles with 24 points apiece. It marked Turner's career high. Junior Angelo Warner added 15, and junior Luka Pajkovic scored 13.
Marshall senior Elijah Pittman led all scorers with 31 points. Freshman Kareem Canty totaled 19 points and a game-high nine assists.
Senior Chad Posthumus recorded 15 rebounds and 14 points for his fourth double-double at Morehead State. Junior Kareem Storey handed out a team-best eight assists for the Eagles before fouling out in regulation. MSU finished with a 40-39 rebounding advantage.
Marshall held its biggest lead, at 48-27, with one minute to play in the first half. The Eagles started the second half with a 13-2 run to cut the Marshall lead to only seven points at 53-46 with 16:09 on the clock.
Turner knocked down a three-pointer with 38 seconds left in the second half to cut the Marshall lead to 85-82. Pajkovic then connected on a lay-up, which trimmed the lead to two points. Posthumus sank a pair of free throws with 14 seconds left to tie the game at 86.
Marshall sophomore DeVince Boykins was given two free throws with just 1.1 left on the clock, but missed both as the contest headed to overtime.
Morehead State closed out the affair on a 10-2 spurt after it was tied at 92. Warner's two free throws with 2:21 remaining gave the Eagles their first lead since 9-8.
The game featured 76 fouls, with eight players fouling out, and 108 free-throw attempts. Marshall was whistled for a school-record 44 infractions. The Eagles shot 62 percent (40-of-65) from the free throw line, while the Thundering Herd knocked down 67 percent (29-of-43).
MSU's bench outscored Marshall's, 41-24.
"Our bench players came up big," Woods said. "With so many fouls being called, you never know who you are going to need off the bench. Bakari and Luka especially were huge for us."
Morehead State shot 45 percent (28-of-62) from the field and 30 percent (6-of-20) from three-point range. Marshall connected on 52 percent (29-of-56) and 30 percent (7-of-23) from outside the arc.
Morehead State forced 26 turnovers, which resulted in 32 points. The Eagles gave the ball away 16 times.
"Morehead State basketball is on the rise," Woods said. "I thought our fans showed great pride today, especially late in the game. We needed some energy in the second half, and they gave it to us."
The Eagles return to action on Tuesday (Nov. 19) at Atlantic Sun Conference foe Northern Kentucky. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.