Sunday, February 22, 2004
MU takes advantage of foul downpour
Late free throws rescue RedHawks in final non-conference game of season
By Mark Schmetzer
OXFORD - Southwest Missouri State's foul trouble saved Miami. Referees called 32 fouls in 17 1/2 minutes in the second half.
Though Miami had 30 fouls to SMS's 26, the RedHawks sank crucial free throws to escape with a 75-66 win over the Bears in an ESPN Bracket Buster game at Millett Hall on Saturday. Juby Johnson made five consecutive free throws in the last minute.
"That was the longest half of the year," Miami coach Charlie Coles said.
Miami (15-8) improved to 5-4 outside the Mid-American Conference in its last non-conference regular-season game. SMS (16-11) suffered its third loss in its last four games.
Johnson scored Miami's first 13 points of the second half and finished with a game-high 24 to move past Craig Tubbs into 10th place on the school's career scoring list with 1,316.
The RedHawks had built a 23-point lead, but the Bears whittled the margin to two points at 64-62 with 1:18 left in the game.
Each team committed 19 fouls in the second half, and they teamed to shoot 78 free throws overall.
"We should have played better as a team, but when both teams got into the bonus, it took a lot away from us," Johnson said.
Senior Gene Seals gave Miami some breathing room with a layup that made the score 66-62 with 56 seconds left. After the Bears turned over the ball on their next possession, they couldn't be choosy about whom they would foul.
"(Coles) kept telling me to go get the ball," said Johnson, who was 10-of-12 from the free-throw line. "We couldn't lose this game. It would have been embarrassing."
Miami built its lead by hitting eight of 14 3-pointers over SMS's 2-3 zone in the first half. The RedHawks finished with a season-high 13 3-pointers, one short of matching the school single-game record. They didn't make a field goal until Josh Hausfeld scored on a layup with six seconds left.
Hausfeld, who had been in a shooting slump, hit four of five shots in the first half and finished with 16 points.
"I'm not sure what the difference was, except they were going in," Hausfeld said. "Every shot I take, I feel like it's going in. I know I was in a slump, but I just had to keep my head up and keep shooting with confidence, and I knew they would start going in."
Team rebounds - 2.
|SW Missouri ||M||FG||Att||FT||Att||R||A||F||TO||TP|
Team rebounds - 6.
3-pointers - SWMS 2-8 (Ahearn 0-1, Johnson 1-3, Easley 0-2, Shavies 1-2), MU 13-22 (St. Clair 1-1, Hausfeld 4-6, Mason 1-2, Johnson 4-5, Penno 0-1, Hatcher 2-4, Horace 1-3). Technicals - None. Officials - Seibert, Gaston, St. Clair. Attendance - 3,120.
|SW Missouri St.||15||51||-66|
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