M Basketball 12.06.17

Men’s Basketball Loses to UConn in Overtime

Men’s basketball was defeated by the University of Connecticut Huskies 84-81 in another overtime battle on Saturday night.

“I thought it was a great college basketball game and I thought the officials did a great job,” Head Coach King Rice said. “I know they just came off an overtime win and now they have another overtime win.”

Junior guard Micah Seaborn lead the Hawks with a career-high 27 points, 20 which came in the first half. Seaborn went 7-10 shooting with four threes. In the second half, UConn’s defense controlled Seaborn, not allowing him to score in the first 14 minutes of the second half.

“It started with me,” Seaborn said. “I have to take that one today and just learn from it for next game.”

MU and UConn would trade baskets for the first ten minutes of the first half before the Huskies would go on a 9-0 run in the span of two minutes to make it 29-20 UConn. The Hawks would then go on a run of their own, finishing the half going 22-7 run to give Monmouth the 42-36 lead at halftime. The Huskies ended the half with a deep buzzer-beater three to close the deficient to six points.

In the second half, UConn would take the lead back, going on a 20-7 run in the first eight minutes of the half to make it 56-49 Huskies.

After a media timeout, the Hawks would go on a 10-3 run, with sophomore guard Louie Pillari tying the game at 59 all after a three-pointer with eight minutes left in regulation.

Monmouth and UConn would trade baskets for the rest of the second half. With the Huskies up 73-72 with a minute left, senior forward Zac Tillman would make a layup to make it 74-73 Hawks with 48 seconds left.

The Huskies then went 1-2 at the free throw line after a foul and the game was tied at 74. After an MU timeout, senior guard Austin Tilghman would miss a deep three attempt and UConn would get the rebound and miss a buzzer-beater three from half court to end regulation, making it the second game in the past week that Hawks would go into overtime.

In overtime, the Hawks lead would be as high as four with two minutes left. The Huskies then went on an 8-1 run to finish the overtime period to give UConn the 84-81 victory. This was the second straight overtime victory for the Huskies, first defeating Columbia 77-73 on Wednesday night.

“You get to shoot any shot on the court that, anytime we’re playing. You don’t get to take ones when….you just don’t get to do that. That’s hero basketball.” Rice said. “Everybody can be, ‘Oh, we did all these cool things.’ We were heroes at the end, and that made us lose at the end, and it’s not okay.”

In overtime, Seaborn, the Hawks leading scorer, was held scoreless in the last 4:29 of the game.

“I have to do better in closing moments,” Seaborn said. “I did a little bit too much at times, and that’s what kind of got other people thinking they could go 1-on-1.”

For the game, Tillman and junior forward Diago Quinn ended the game in double figures, with 13 and 11 points, respectively. Sophomore forward Mustapha Traore added a team-high eight rebounds and four points. Monmouth’s bench outscored UConn’s 25-8, doing so for the seventh time this season in eight contests.

The Hawks (3-5) will look to rebound at home against Hofstra on Wednesday, Dec. 6 at 7:00 p.m. at the OceanFirst Bank Center. The Hawks will then go on a road trip that begins against #8 ranked Kentucky at Madison Square Garden in the Citi Hoops Classic on Saturday, Dec. 9 at 12:00 p.m.