Twilley's clutch three gives Bucs dramatic 75-72 overtime win
Twilley's clutch three gives Bucs dramatic 75-72 overtime win
Thursday, January 4, 2007


                JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Jan. 4, 2007) - Freshman Dequan Twilley (Shelbyville) sank a long-range 3-pointer from the right wing with .4 seconds remaining in overtime to give ETSU a 75-72 win over defending Atlantic Sun Conference champion Lipscomb Thursday night inside Memorial Center.


It was the second overtime game of the week for ETSU, and the win improves the Buccaneers to 9-7 overall, 3-1 in A-Sun play. Meanwhile, Lipscomb drops to 8-7, 2-2.


            Twilley's last second heroics highlighted a special night for a trio of ETSU freshmen, including a 17-point and career-high eight rebound effort from guard Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.), and an 8-point, three-rebound night from forward Blake Mishler (Metamora, Ill.). In addition, Smith, Twilley and Mishler combined for an 11-of-13 mark from the foul line after halftime, and Mishler grabbed the final defensive rebound of the game setting up Twilley's dramatic winner.


            "Obviously, our freshman didn't play like freshmen tonight," said ETSU head coach Murry Bartow. "Dequan just wants the ball late and we saw that in the Belmont game. It didn't work out the other night, but he came through tonight. Mike Smith is not your typical freshman and he showed that with his play. Blake really did some good things off the bench and without him we don't win the game."


            The first half resembled the Bucs' earlier game this week against Belmont, as ETSU and Lipscomb traded the lead five times and the game was tied a total of three times. The largest lead for the Bucs was seven at the 12:13 mark, while Lipscomb's largest lead came at the 15:25 mark, 9-6. ETSU led most of the way in the first half, but the Bisons outscored the Bucs 6-3 in the final three minutes to take a 32-31 advantage at the break.


            After the break, the Bucs managed to finally regain the lead at 50-49 with 8:24 remaining in the contest. They would maintain that advantage for the next eight minutes, leading by as many as six points at 62-56 with 1:38 left in the game. However, Lipscomb rallied and managed to tie the game on a 3-pointer by senior Trey Williams with 12 seconds left. Twilley then attempted his first game-winner of the night, but his shot clanked off the rim and the two teams headed to overtime.


            In the extra period, ETSU's defensive effort stepped up, holding Lipscomb to a 20 percent shooting clip. Nonetheless, Lipscomb took the lead first thanks to a pair of free throws by junior Eddie Ard, but the Bucs quickly tied the contest and managed to build a lead of three at 72-69. Again, Ard came through with a 3-pointer to tie the game with 1:14 left, and Lipscomb held the Bucs on their next possession to get a shot at the win. ETSU's defense held once more, and a missed jumper by senior Brian Fisk fell short of the mark. Mishler rebounded and Twilley made the game winner.


            Smith finished with a team-high 17 points, while sophomore guard Courtney Pigram (Memphis) pitched in 15 points. Junior forward Andrew Reed (Port Richey, Fla.) scored 13 points and grabbed eight rebounds before fouling out in overtime. For Lipscomb, Ard finished with a game-high 24 points and Fisk finished with 18.


            The Bucs return to action on the road versus Gardner-Webb Sunday beginning at 2 p.m., and will continue their two-game league road swing Tuesday at Campbell. For more on ETSU men's basketball throughout the season, visit