YORK, Neb. — Jeffrey Oxford (Claremore, Okla., Claremore HS) drained a 3-pointer with four seconds to play in overtime and Grant Munsen (Manhattan, Kan., Manhattan HS) blocked a potential game-tying shot as the McPherson College men's basketball team rallied for a 95-92 overtime victory over York College Wednesday night in a Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (KCAC) matchup at the Freeman Center.
The Panthers scored the first five points of the extra session and led by that margin with less than two minutes to play before Chamaje Barideaux (New Iberia, La., New Iberia Senior HS) drained a pair of free throws at the 1:43 mark to pull within three at 92-89. Oxford followed with a steal but missed the layup on the other end. Luckily, a trailing Frederick Watts (Houston, Texas, Channelview HS) picked up the loose ball and got the putback.
Trevor Lenear was called for an offensive foul at the 1:02 mark to give McPherson the ball back trailing by just one. Fouled on the other end, Barideaux hit one of two free throws to tie the game at 92-all with 47 seconds left on the clock. A miss by the Panthers gave McPherson one last opportunity. Barideaux drove toward the basket then dished it off to Oxford in the corner, who drained the game-winning triple - his only 3-pointer of the game.
York opened the game with an 8-2 run over the first four minutes, but McPherson rallied for 10 straight points to tie the game at grab a 12-8 at the 13:08 mark. Nevell Lenard drained a 3-pointer to end the Bulldog rally and, after forcing a turnover, Lenard added a layup to put the Panthers up by three.
A layup by Lual Magot (Tucson, Ariz., Tohono O'odham CC) with 12:00 remaining in the first half briefly put McPherson back in front again at the 12:00 mark, but York responded with 11 straight points over the next 3:09 to take a 24-14 advantage with 8:51 left on the clock. The Bulldogs rallied for the next seven points - three by Watts and four by Oxford - to cut the deficit to just three before Aaron Munday-Rashid drained a 3-pointer to put the Panthers back up by six at the 5:19 mark.
York pushed the lead back out to eight points on a handful of occasions as the first half wound down, but McPherson countered by closing the frame on a 7-2 run led by a couple of Aaron Bachura (Wilsey, Kan., Council Grove HS) layups and a Barideaux 3-pointer to leave the Panthers with a 43-40 lead at the break.
With Munsen limited in the second half after picking up his third personal foul at the 19:04 mark, York built the lead to 11 points. The Panthers led by that margin as late as the 4:50 mark before the Bulldogs began to rally. McPherson finished regulation on a 16-5 run, tying the game on a Barideaux 3-pointer to force the extra session. York had a pair of chances in the closing seconds, but both of Michael Johnson's shots fell short.
McPherson shot 42.4 percent (36-of-85) from the field with six 3-pointers but came through in the clutch at the line, connecting on 17 of 19 opportunities. York was 48.7 percent (39-of-80) overall with seven 3-pointers and 7-of-10 effort at the line. The Bulldogs out-rebounded the Panthers, 53-43.
Oxford scored a career-high 26 points on 11-of-17 shooting from the field. He was also 3-of-3 at the line. Bachura added 22 points on 10-of-23 shooting with a pair of 3-pointers and seven rebounds. He moved past John Tegeler (1,249 points; 1962-65) into 13th place on McPherson's all-time scoring chart.
Barideaux also notched a career-high with 19 points, seven rebounds, four assists and two steals. He drained a team-high three 3-pointers and was 8-of-9 at the line. Magot added 13 points, nine rebounds and three steals, while Watts also just missed a double-double with nine points and 11 rebounds.
Lenard led all players with 31 points on 14-of-18 shooting from the field. He also had 10 boards. Johnson added 20 points, eight assists and seven rebounds, while Chris Smith had 13 points, nine assists, four rebounds and four steals before fouling out in the overtime session.
"I can't say enough about this group right now," said head coach Tim Swartzendruber. "We never gave up. We were down in OT but fought back. We continue to play our best and it has been exciting. I hope we get a great crowd Saturday. Kansas Wesleyan is also playing well and it should be a great game."
The Bulldogs return home to face rival Kansas Wesleyan University (15-10, 13-6 KCAC) Saturday for Senior Day. The Coyotes took the initial meeting 65-55 on Jan. 3 in Salina and are one of the KCAC's hottest teams at the moment, riding a six-game winning streak after Wednesday's 88-80 victory over Friends. Tipoff from the Sport Center is slated for 7 p.m.