WESTMINSTER, Md. – Swarthmore scored five straight points late in overtime on its way to a 75-71 victory over McDaniel in Centennial Conference (CC) men's basketball action on Wednesday.
Evan Pupelis (Manhasset, N.Y./Manhasset) led the Green Terror (10-6, 4-5 CC) with a season high-tying 17 points, including hitting all seven of his free-throw attempts. He also pulled down nine rebounds and dished out a career-high five assists.
Will Gates and Jay Kober led the Garnet (4-12, 3-6 CC) with 20 points apiece.
Traiing by four after Jay Kober hit two free throws with 49.7 seconds to play in regulation, Nic Martin (Hagerstown, Md./St. Maria Goretti) hit a layup with 38.5 seconds showing to draw the hosts within two.
After a 10-second backcourt violation with 27.3 seconds remaining, Martin drove the lane to knot the game at 63-all with 12.3 seconds on the clock.
Swarthmore had a chance at a game-winner in regulation but could not convert, sending the game to overtime.
Pupelis converted a layup on McDaniel's first possession of the five-minute extra session for a 65-63 lead.
Back-to-back baskets from Gates turned the two-point deficit into a two-point lead with 2:11 to play in overtime.
Two free throws from Andrew Merlo (Rehoboth, Del./Cape Henlopen) knotted the game 17 seconds later before Phillip Perry (Crownsville, Md./Annapolis Area Christian) hit the first of two free throws to give the Green Terror a 68-67 lead with 1:40 on the clock.
A Joe Keedy three-point play put Swarthmore back in fron with 1:20 on the clock before Ethan Lee made it a two-possession game with 25.7 seconds left.
Merlo countered with a 3-pointer to draw McDaniel within one with 15.3 seconds remaining.
After a timeout, the Green Terror trapped Swarthmore in the corner, forcing a timeout. Out of the time, Kober hit both free throws with 10.4 seconds on the clock and McDaniel could not hit a shot on its final possession.
A Keedy layup and Jordan Federer 3-pointer staked Swarthmore to a 9-4 lead before five minutes had elapsed in the game.
Merlo responded with a triple of his own before Jordan Cheney hit a jumper to push the lead back out to four.
Two Pupelis free throws sparked a 6-0 run for the first of eight lead changes in the game, which also featured 12 ties, giving McDaniel a 13-11 lead with 9:02 to play on a pair of Jimmy Cranwell (Brick, N.J./Rumson-Fair Haven Regional) free throws.
A Martin 3-pointer gave McDaniel a 23-19 lead with 4:49 on the clock but the Garnet closed the half on a 15-5 run, including Kober hitting a 3-pointer at the buzzer, to take a 34-28 lead into the break.
Davis Ancona hit a free throw 1:02 into the second half to stretch the lead to its largest at 35-28.
Trailing 37-30, Perry hit a layup and Tyler Rudd (Glen Burnie, Md./Glen Burnie) canned a triple to slice the deficit to two with 17:48 showing.
After Kober extended the advantage to 50-47 on a pull-up jumper, Pupelis converted a layup at the other end to spark a 7-0 burst. Wesley Brooks (North Wales, Pa./North Penn) followed up three straight Pupelis layups with a 3-pointer.
Rudd once again made it a four-point game, hitting a 3-pointer with 5:57 to play but six straight Swarthmore points gave the visitors a two-point lead 3:05 later.
Merlo added 12 points while Rudd had 11 and Martin chipped in 10 to go with six rebounds.
McDaniel returns to action at Franklin & Marshall on Saturday. Game time is 3 p.m.