12.1.12 MEN'S BASKETBALL: Cavs Down Huskies in OT

Men's Basketball, 2012-12-01

(North Canton, OH) Walsh improved to 5-0 overall and to 2-0 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference after defeating Michigan Tech University (3-2, 1-1) 84-75 in overtime today.  The Cavs are off to their first 5-0 start since 2010, when they won their first 26 games and finished the season 30-2.  Walsh plays its next two GLIAC games on the road, next Thursday at Northwood University (6 pm) and next Saturday at Lake Superior State (1 pm).  Both games will be broadcast live on 95.9 FM WNPQ.

After taking an 11-9 lead at the 12:19 mark, the Cavs led the remainder of the first half and 28-25 at the break. 

The Cavs built the lead to eight points (60-52) with 6:17 to play when the Huskies went on a nine-point run to lead 61-60 with 2:10 to play.  Walsh regained the lead at 62-61 when Brad DuPont (6-0, Jr., Massillon, OH/Jackson) scored with 1:58 to play.  Michigan Tech would regain the lead (63-62) on two free throws by the GLIAC’s leading scorer Ali Haidar with 1:23 to play.  DuPont was then fouled on the next possession and hit two free throws to put Walsh back on top at 64-63 with 1:14 to play.

Alex Culy, who hit four three-pointers in the first half for the Huskies, hit is first trey of the second half to put the visitors back on top at 66-64 with 57 seconds left.  Walsh freshman Jesse Hardin (6-1, Warren, OH/Harding) answered with a jumper of his own to knot the score at 66 with 44 seconds remaining. 

With 22 seconds left Ben Stelzer scored to put the Huskies back on top at 68-66. Walsh then turned the ball over on the next possession and had to foul with 16 seconds left.  The Cavs would receive one more chance with Culy missed the front end of a one and one.  Davonte Beard (6-2, So., Akron, OH/St. Vincent-St. Mary) rebounded the miss and after a time out hit a jumper on the right-side from eight-feet out to send the game into overtime. 

Walsh dominated the overtime period, hitting 12-12 free throws and holding Michigan Tech to just one basket on nine attempts. 

The Cavs held the GLIAC’s top scorer, Ali Haidar, to 20 points on just 7-18 from the field.  He came into the game averaging over 27 points per game.  Haidar was a monster on the boards grabbing a game-high 22 rebounds, a record for Walsh’s new Alumni Arena.

“We doubled Haidar early and never really let him into a rhythm,” noted Cavs’ Head Coach Jeff Young. “We hung tough and made shots when we had too.  We have really been working on our free throws and hit paid big today.”

Walsh placed five players in double figures led by Kenny Kornowski’s (6-9, Sr., Marshallville, OH/Smithville) game-high 24 points and fourth double-double of the season.  He grabbed 13 rebounds. 

Hrvoje Vucic (7-1, Jr., Split, Crotia/Faust Vrancic/Valparaiso) was 8-10 from the field and scored 16 points, 10 in the first half.  Hardin added 13 points off the bench.  Beard and DuPont each had ten points after being scoreless at halftime.  DuPont also handed out a game-high seven assists and had three steals.

Haidar was aided by Austin Armga’s 18 points.  Culy added 17 and Ben Stelzer 12.

The Cavs shot 48% from the floor and were a perfect 20-20 from the foul line.