COLCHESTER, Vt. (February 3, 2018) – Franklin Pierce University men's basketball senior forward Mike McDevitt (Cumberland, Maine) tallied a team-high 26 points in a thrilling 92-91 overtime victory versus Saint Michael's College Saturday afternoon at the Ross Sports Center. With the win, the Ravens improve to 12-9 overall and 7-9 NE10 while the Purple Knights fall to 5-16, 2-14 NE10.
The Ravens trailed by five with under a minute to go, but held the hosts scoreless while notching the final six markers of the showdown. The contest was a physical affair, which saw a total of 62 fouls called and 72 free throw attempts. Six players from the hosts fouled out which forced them to play the final 1.4 seconds of overtime with only four athletes.
McDevitt was in foul trouble in the first half as he picked up two early fouls and only played six minutes. He remained on the court for the whole second half and overtime period. He racked up 15 of his 26 markers after halftime and tallied half of the Ravens points in the free quarter. The team captain was 8-of-15 (53.3%) from the hardwood and 8-of-9 (88.9%) from the charity stripe while snagging seven rebounds. It was his fifth 20+ point contest of the campaign.
Doyin Fadojutimi (Temple Hills, Md.) was one rebound shy of a double-double as the sophomore guard finished with 17 markers, nine boards, two assists, one steal and one block. Jordan Lackey (South Plainfield, N.J.) and Falu Seck (Washington, D.C.) joined their teammates in double-figures with 16 and 10 points respectively. Lackey did most of his damage at the line as he was 10-of-12 (83.3%).
For the second consecutive game, junior guard Levi Holmes III was unconscious from long range as he dropped 9-of-12 (75.0%) attempts. He finished with a game-high 43 points before fouling out just a few minutes into overtime.
Both teams shot an identical 40.0% each from the field over the course of the game. However, FPU took 14 more trips to the free throw line than their counterparts. The Ravens post presence was unstoppable as they notched 40 points in the paint compared to the hosts 26 and outrebounded the Purple Knights by a 51-to-39 margin.
Fadojutimi put the Ravens ahead early with two freebies about a minute into the contest. McDevitt promptly added to the Raven lead when he knocked down a three from the right wing off a feed from Asante Sandiford (Boston, Mass.) Franklin Pierce's opening binge continued as Lackey was fouled driving to the hole. He missed the free throw however as the guests led 7-0. Seck chipped in a transition three-ball at the top of the point as the Birds pushed ahead 10-0. An Eli DiGrande free throw made the score 10-1 until McDevitt posted up a smaller defender on the right block and threw in a jumper which upped the Crimson and Grey's edge to 12-1.
Freshman forward Devonte McCall (Amherst, Mass.) followed his own missed layup and put the rebound in for the second chance points at 14-3. Holmes III responded with a three-pointer and the Purple Knights press produced a turnover and two Stephen Laffin charity stripe conversions to make the score 14-8. Four straight via the Ravens and a Holmes III trailer three-ball brought their deficit to single figures at 18-11. A Jordan Guzman old-fashioned three-point play and a DiGrande layup made it a four-point game 20-16. Saint Michael's had an opportunity to bring the score to 20-18, but McCall chase-down blocked Jaylen Hall and pinned the ball to the backboard to keep it a four-point game. Two DiGrande freebies and another Guzman take to the hole tied the game 20-20.
Following a timeout by the Ravens, David Bradbury (Deep River, Conn.) moved the Ravens back ahead 23-21 when he rifled home a three-ball from the left corner. On the immediate possession, Holmes III connected again from the left wing to give the hosts their first edge of the contest at 24-23. Seck reestablished the advantage towards the Ravens side, but six consecutive points by SMC upped their advantage to 30-25.
Franklin Pierce used another stoppage and it worked again in the Ravens favor when Sean Fasoyiro (Houston, Texas) spun through the lane and banked in a layup while being fouled. The sophomore guard knocked home the free throw to cut the deficit to two, 30-28. Five in a row by Holmes III grew his squads lead back to five at 35-30. Two Bradbury free throws with 10 ticks to go brought the score to 38-33 at the intermission.
After a missed three-pointer, Hall stole the rock away from Seck and dropped home an easy layup. McDevitt got those points right back for his squad when he posted up two defenders on the right block and dumped in a bucket. Three fouls were called on the Purple Knights the next time they defended their basket. The second chances were key for the Crimson and Grey as Fadojutimi manufactured a left-wing three-ball to make it a two-point contest. Jackson III missed a three-pointer and McDevitt made them pay with a post layup to tie the game at 40 all. Freshman Walter Storey and Holmes III banged home trifectas, which increased the advantage to 46-40. Derek Cheatom continued the run of eight straight points for the hosts with a contested layup in the restricted area.
A driving McCall take through traffic brought the lead down to four, 48-44, but a second chance tip out three to Holmes III and a Cheatom corner connection increased the SMC score to 10, 54-44. The Ravens went on an 11-2 run spurned by Lackey who accounted for seven of those markers with most coming from the charity stripe to pull within one, 56-55.
Trailing by three following another Holmes III beyond the arc connection, Seck brought the contest to a deadlock, 60-60 by draining a catch and shoot three from the right wing. Right after the connection, McDevitt took a trip to the line and knocked down both of his attempts to regain the lead for FPU.
Ahead by four, Holmes III poured in his sixth three-pointer of the game to bring the deficit to one, 64-63. A Guzman drive tied the score at 66-66 before two McCall freebies and a Lackey hoop and harm gave the Ravens a five-point, 71-66 advantage. The Raven edge was quickly erased when Cheatom brought the rock to the hoop using a one-handed dunk and Holmes III sank another trey from the top of the key to tie the score at 73-73. Fadojutimi quickly moved the Ravens back ahead by two, 75-73, but Holmes III was fouled when he drained another three and completed a four-point play to push his squad back in front by two. McDevitt answered on the next trip down the court with a left corner catch and shoot three of his own as the Ravens led by one, 78-77 with 1:53 to go. The three-ball trading continued as Holmes III connected again to move the hosts back ahead. The teams missed shots over the next minute until McDevitt hit two attempts from the line to tie the score at 80-80. One last second stepback jumper by Saint Michael's was short as an extra period was needed to decide a winner.
Holmes III only lasted 45 seconds into the overtime period as he picked up his fifth foul. With the game tied at 82, Guzman once again took the ball into the hole and was hacked while his layup attempt fell through the net. He knocked down the free throw, which opened up a three-point, 85-82 advantage. Following a McDevitt layup, another Guzman and1 increased the hosts lead to four, 88-84 with 2:56 to go. McDevitt earned two markers back at the stripe as the Ravens trailed by two, 88-86. Under a minute remained when Storey drilled home a contested three-ball from the left wing to open up a two-possession edge for the Purple Knights. Immediately following the three-ball, Fadojutimi downed a lay-in quickly to drop the Raven deficit to three with 54 seconds showing on the clock. McDevitt and the defensive unit came up with a steal, which led to a pair of Lackey free throws to pull FPU within one at 91-90. FPU kept on pressing as Seck forced a turnover at midcourt. Fadojutmi hung in the air and earned a trip to the line where he sank both free throws to give the Ravens a 92-91 edge. Stan Foster's potential game-winning shot attempt was short as the Ravens received the ball and completed the minute rally.
The Ravens remain on the road to begin next week when they travel to NE10 opponent Merrimack College on Wednesday for a 7:30 p.m. tip-off.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens ), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce men's basketball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).