FOND DU LAC, Wisconsin (SabreAthletics.com) – Marian University junior Carvell Oliver completed a stunning come-from-behind victory when his 30-foot buzzer-beater handed visiting Edgewood College a 61-58 defeat in Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference play this evening.
The Manitowoc native capitalized on an Edgewood turnover in the final 3 seconds, crossing half-court and watching it fly as it kissed off the glass in victorious fashion to give the Sabres (9-9, 8-5 NACC) a much-needed win over the Eagles (8-9, 7-5 NACC).
Marian trailed by as many as five points in the final minute when Edgewood's Joe Klocek drained a three from the top of the key to give his team a 58-53 advantage with 43 seconds left. Two Alex Stecker free throws made it a three-point game and, with under 15 seconds remaining, the Oostburg junior came through in the clutch with a play almost as important as Oliver's game-winner.
It started with a steal from behind by Josh Creed and culminated in Stecker's game-tying triple with 10.5 seconds left.
From there, the Eagles called timeout to set up what they thought would be their game-winning opportunity, but it backfired when Dylan Rusch's behind-the-back pass skirted through to Oliver after Klocek slipped and the rest is history.
Creed led all scorers with 16 points on 5-of-12 shooting, while Oliver and Stecker each added 10 points apiece for the Sabres, who shot 48.9 percent (23-for-47) after a stellar 14-for-24 (58.4 percent) performance in the first half.
Marian led 33-26 at the break, but saw a 13-point advantage dwindle with Edgewood's 6-0 run to close the half. The Sabres would end up going nearly 13 minutes of game action with just one field goal made after going the final 4:51 of the first half without a point and just one field goal in the first 7-plus minutes of the second half.
The Eagles were led by Trevor Neale's 15 points on 7-for-8 shooting to go along with nine rebounds, three assists and two blocks. He was the only Eagle in double figures, while Klocek finished one point away with nine.
Before Stecker and Oliver connected on game-changing three's in the final 10.5 seconds, the Sabres had been 0-for-6 from downtown in the second half and just 2-for-10 for the game overall.
The win leap-frogged the Sabres over the Eagles and into a fourth-place tie with Lakeland in the league standings.
Marian enters its bye week before returning to action Saturday, Jan. 31, against Dominican, which will be recognized as Alumni Day inside Sadoff Gymnasium.
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NCAA Tournaments (2)