McDonough’s Game-Winning Shot Helps Lift Tigers to First Place Tie in SAA Standings

McDonough’s Game-Winning Shot Helps Lift Tigers to First Place Tie in SAA Standings

SEWANEE, Tenn. - Freshman forward Sean McDonough blew the roof off of Juhan Gymnasium in front of a capacity-size crowd with a game-winning three-point shot with 2.2 seconds left in regulation, as the Sewanee men's basketball team defeated cross-state rival Rhodes, 99-96, on Friday night.

Final Score: Sewanee (10-8, 6-2) 99, Rhodes (9-10, 3-5) 96
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-Just as in last weekend's matchup, the teams went back-and-forth, with nobody having more than a four-point lead for the first 10-plus minutes of the contest.

-After Hunter Buescher drained two of his nine free throws in the contest to push the lead back to Sewanee's favor, 33-32, with 9:52 left in the opening half, Rhodes took it back and went on a run, going 13-1 in a stretch of nearly four minutes. Rhodes held on to the lead, but it would be a two-possession game, 57-51, as both teams headed into the locker room.

-The pendulum began to swing in favor of the Purple and Gold in the final 20 minutes. Trailing by six, 63-57, with 17 minutes to go, the Tigers began a push to tie the contest. With 15 minutes in regulation, Luke Smith helped tie the contest at 63 points each with a layup. The home team went on a 16-3 run in about a six-plus minute span to retake the lead.

-However, as Rhodes tends to do, they did not go away late. With a deficit as large as 12 points at one point, the Lynx were able to erase the deficit to tie the contest with 23 seconds to go.

-Daniel Darst was at the charity stripe for the Lynx, trailing by one point, and had the opportunity to give his team the lead. After making the first shot, he missed the shot, forcing a 96-all tie and Sewanee's ball.

-After a Sewanee timeout, Sean McDonough was open from the left wing and nailed the eventual game-winning shot with 2.2 seconds left in regulation.

-For the contest, there were eight ties and 13 lead changes.

-In total, six Sewanee players reached double figures in the point column, including all five starters.

-Sewanee has defeated Rhodes at home for the sixth straight time.

-With Oglethorpe losing to Millsaps, along with wins from Centre, Birmingham-Southern and Sewanee, all four teams will enter Sunday's action 6-2 in Southern Athletic Association (SAA) play, good for a four-way tie for the top spot in the conference.

-Sunday's Schedule:

Hendrix at Sewanee
Rhodes at Centre
Birmingham-Southern at Oglethorpe

-Adrian Thomas surpassed his previous career-best of 31 with a 32-point night on 12-of-17 from the floor and 8-of-10 from the charity stripe against the Lynx. The Chattanooga, Tenn. native added a double-double with 13 rebounds.

-Sean McDonough made four shots from downtown en route to a 16-point performance in 31 bench minutes.

-Cam Caldwell and Luke Smith contributed 12 points each. Caldwell posted a double-double with 10 boards, while Smith missed out on the feat with nine assists in addition to three steals.

-Hunter Buescher and Matt Lee added 11 points each for Sewanee.

-The Tigers finished the contest 29-of-49 (59.2 percent) from the floor, and 37-of-50 (74 percent) from the free throw line. The 37 made free throws is the most in the last 10 seasons.

-On defense, the Tigers limited the visitors to a 42.7 percent (32-of-75) shooting performance from the field, which is the fourth-lowest mark this season.

-On the glass, Sewanee out-rebounded the visitors, 45-29 in the contest, a mirror image compared to last weekend's matchup. Rhodes corralled 36 boards to Sewanee's 29.

-Coming into the weekend third nationally in points per game (110), the Tigers held the Lynx under 100 points for the fourth time in 19 games, with three of the four coming in conference play.

-Anesu Nyawata dropped 17 points to lead Rhodes, while Andrew Evans and Vaughn Samson added 13 each.

-Up next for the Tigers will be the Warriors of Hendrix College. Tip is slated for 3 p.m. inside Juhan Gymnasium.

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