GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – If you didn't make it to the DU Student Center today you missed an all-time great game! The Panthers and Cardinals were deadlocked after 40 minutes of regulation and then again after one overtime period. It wasn't until the second overtime period that Davenport pulled away from Saginaw Valley. The crowd was electric and in the end the Panthers scored buckets and got stops when they needed them the most. The victory helped DU remain in sole possession of second place in the GLIAC as a whole and the Panthers improved to 6-1 at home this season.
Final Score: Davenport-94 | Saginaw Valley-86
Location: Grand Rapids, Mich.
POINTS PER HALF
First Half: DU-31 | SVSU-32
Second Half: DU-41 | SVSU-40
First OT: DU-7 | SVSU-7
Second OT: DU-15 | SVSU-7
HOW IT HAPPENED
Davenport scored on their opening two offensive possessions, a three from Janeau Joubert and a layup by Dyllon Hudson-Emory. The two straight buckets gave the Panthers a five-point advantage just a few minutes into the contest. The Cardinals of Saginaw Valley responded by going on a 9-1 run to take a 9-6 lead just over five minutes into the game. The majority of the first half was back and forth, neither team grasped control for a long enough period of time to go on a major run. The game was tied at nine, 12, 14, 17, 20, and 23. The cardinals held a slim one-point lead at half after Myles Belyeu scored in the paint with four seconds left on the game clock.
The second half opened up with a choppy flow as 10 fouls were called in less than four minutes. Hudson-Emory tied the game at 37 apiece after hitting a free throw with 16:19 to play in regulation. The cardinals rattled off 11 unanswered points to take a 48-37 lead. The lead hovered around 11 points for the Cardinals for a good portion of the half. A layup by Hudson-Emory with 6:54 to play cut the deficit down to single digits and sparked a Panther comeback. Davenport scored nine unanswered points to bring the score to 60-58 in favor of SVSU. The Cardinals responded and hit two free throws to make it a two-possession game with just over four minutes remaining. Joubert came down the floor and drilled a three to bring Davenport to within one point of Saginaw Valley. After a missed jumper by SVSU Avery Hudson drove the basketball and was fouled, putting him to the line to shoot a pair. He drilled both and gave Davenport their first lead since 17:11 on the clock earlier in the half. The Cardinals battled with Davenport and held a four-point lead with just 48 ticks left on the clock. Senior Hudson-Emory came up big with a layup and hit the additional free throw to cut the lead down to one with 26 seconds remaining. On the ensuing play, Joubert knocked the ball loose from Jack Roberts and drove the ball down the lane. He was hacked by an SVSU player and went to the line for two free throws. He calmly hit the first and then missed on the second. Saginaw Valley snatched the defensive rebound and had a chance to end the game in regulation, but Darnell Hoskins missed a jumper with one second left on the clock.
The first overtime period was low in scoring, but couldn't produce a winner. At the end of the five minute period both teams were deadlocked at 79-79. The second overtime period saw Davenport get off to an extremely hot start. The Panthers won the tip and Hudson-Emory found himself unguarded in the paint, where he threw down an emphatic two-handed jam to put DU on the board. The Cardinals came down the floor and responded with a layup by Avery Lewis to tie the game at 81-81. Junior Robbie Bramhill heated up quickly over the next three possessions for Davenport. The Panthers ran a set and found Bramhill open for a three that he drained, putting DU up by three. On defense, Joubert stole the ball and found Bramhill in transition for a layup to increase the lead to five points. After a defensive stop, the Panthers brought the ball up the court and ran another set, finding Bramhill yet again. This time the sharpshooter from Canada fired a shot from a few feet beyond the arc and nailed it. Head Coach Burt Paddock quickly called a timeout and the DU Student Center erupted. The Cardinals came out of the timeout and scored three points over the next couple of possessions, cutting the DU lead down to five. However, Hudson made four throws and the Panthers only committed one foul in the half to eliminate the opportunity for Saginaw Valley to make a comeback.
Points: Hudson-Emory (28)
Rebounds: Hudson (11)
Assists: Chris Rollins/Hudson (4)
Steals: Rollins (4)
Blocks: Khadim Dieng/Joubert/Bramhill (1)
Hudson: 22 points and 11 rebounds
"My assistant coaches have assembled a group of incredibly unselfish and tough minded group of student-athletes. There are not many teams that, when faced with a 12-point deficit with less than six minutes to play, can still find a way.
Our kids after a timeout, with approximately 5:30 to go in regulation, put their foot in the ground and made a commitment to play with a great deal of passion on the defensive end. In addition, they ran our offensive sets and possessions flawlessly. It was incredibly satisfying to watch our young tea in the face of adversity, getting stronger and stronger mentally as the game clock continued to shorten.
I can't say enough about our kids and their willingness to play like their hair is on fire and to play so unselfishly.
Today was an awesome day in that we were able to get a really good win and do it on the same day we had our alumni in town for a game. I can't tell you how proud I am of our current players and our former players who did so much for this program and continue to be great ambassadors for our University! GO PANTHERS! – Coach Paddock
Davenport will spend nearly a week up north for their next two contests. The Panthers will play at Northern Michigan on Thursday and then at Michigan Tech on Saturday.
Story by: Devin Steiner
Picture credit: Hannah Paddock