Buzzer Beater Lifts Bloomsburg Over Mountain Cats
11/12/11... (Box Score) Trevon Johnson's runner in the lane with 1.6 seconds remaining gave Bloomsburg University a 74-72 victory over the Mountain Cats in Saturday's final game of the 2011 Pitt-Johnstown Tip-Off Classic in the Sports Center. Nick Novak (Murrysville, Pa.) scored a game-high 25 points to lead the Mountain Cats, now 1-1 on the year.
In a fairly tight first half, Pitt-Johnstown climbed out to a 13-9 lead on Jordan Miller's (Vinco, Pa.) three-pointer at the 14:35 mark, but Bloomsburg tied it at 18 on a Lorenzo Christmas three-pointer just over three minutes later.
That basket ignited a 16-7 Huskies run over the next seven minutes. Christmas' three-pointer at 9:39 gave the lead back to Bloomsburg, before his fourth three-pointer of the first half put the Huskies up 34-25 with 4:32 remaining.
The Mountain Cats clawed back and outscored Bloomsburg 10-2 the rest of the way, including Patrick Grubb's (Turtle Creek, Pa.) bucket in the paint with time running down to cut it to 36-35 at halftime.
With 11 ties and 15 lead changes, the second half was just as close.
Another basket by Grubbs to start the second half put Pitt-Johnstown back in front, but the Huskies answered with back-to-back three-pointers from Christmas and Nmandi Njoku at 16:00 to go back up 45-40.
Seven straight points from Grubbs gave the lead back to Pitt-Johnstown again at 54-53 with 11:30 to play.
Pitt-Johnstown slowly got the lead up to 64-60 at 7:10 on consecutive baskets by Novak.
However, it stayed close the rest of the way.
Novak's free-throw knotted the score at 72 with 19 second on the clock. Following a pair of timeouts, Bloomsuburg inbounded the ball and found Johnson, who drove the lane and hit the game-winner with less than two seconds left.
Novak led all scorers with 25 points and six assists. Grubbs was the only other Mountain Cat to score in double-figures. Grubbs had 21 points and seven rebounds. Miller had nine points, and Paul Weatherly (Johnstown, Pa.) tallied eight points and eight rebounds.
Pitt-Johnstown ended the day shooting 54.9% (28-51) from the field and 5-14 from three-point range. However, the Mountain Cats, who held a slim advantage in rebounding, hit just 11-21 from the free-throw line. Bloomsburg shot 51.9% (28-54) from the floor, 10-17 from behind the three-point line, and 8-14 from the charity stripe.
Christmas paced the Huskies with 18 points, including 6-9 from three-point range. Larry Webster had 16 points and six rebounds, and Johnson scored 13 points and dished out eight assists for Bloomsburg, which evened its record at 1-1.
In Saturday's first game, Wheeling Jesuit scored the first 11 points and built a 50-29 halftime lead over Chowan. The Cardinals pushed the lead to as many as 50 with 3:40 to play, before cruising to the 46-point win. Obi Ukwuoma's 20 points and eight rebounds and Steve Catich's 19 points and eight rebounds led four Wheeling Jesuit players who scored in double-figures. Antonio Reddic poured in a game-high 23 points, and Aaron Allen collected 13 points to lead the way for Chowan.
Pitt-Johnstown will open the WVIAC schedule with a doubleheader with the Lady Cats against Davis & Elkins (WV) College on Wednesday in the Sports Center. The Lady Cats will tip-off at 5:30 p.m., followed by the men's game at 7:30 p.m.