Nov. 16, 2008
WORCESTER, Mass. - Despite the second straight double-double by senior Ahmad Nivins, the Saint Joseph's men's basketball team dropped a 73-69 overtime game at Holy Cross on Sunday.
Tied at 63-63 to start overtime, the Crusaders scored the first seven points of the extra stanza, opening up a 70-63 lead. The Hawks closed to within one, 70-69, with less than a minute to play, but Holy Cross' Eric Meister hit one of two free throws, and teammate Alex Vander Baan added a pair of free throws to hold on for the win.
The loss is SJU's eighth straight overtime defeat. The last time the Hawks emerged from overtime victorious was on December 31, 2002, at Gonzaga.
The Hawks started the game slowly, trailing 20-10 with 8:43 left in the first half. SJU fought back to find itself down just 24-18 with six minutes to go in the period, then used a 17-4 run to end the half and take a 35-28 edge into halftime.
The Hawks opened their lead to 12 points, going up 47-35 on a Tasheed Carr free throw at 14:40. The Hawk lead would remain in double digits until a pair of Crusader free throws cut it to eight, 51-43, with 9:11 to go in regulation. Holy Cross then used a 14-1 spurt to surge ahead, 53-52, with 6:10 remaining.
Neither team led by more than two points over the final six minutes of regulation. After Nivins hit one of two free throws to put the Hawks ahead by two, Adam May hit a three-pointer with 46 seconds left to give the Crusaders the lead, 62-61.
A made free throw by May gave the Crusaders a two-point lead with 9.2 seconds to go, but Carr drove the lane in the closing seconds to tie the score at 63-63 and force overtime.
Individually, Nivins tallied a team-high 17 points and 12 rebounds, while Carr added 16 points. Darrin Govens tallied 13 points, while Idris Hilliard added 10 of his own. The Crusaders also had four players in double figures, led by May's 15 points, all of which came in the second half.
Saint Joseph's returns to action Monday, November 24, at 3 p.m. versus Texas in the opening round of the Maui Invitational.