Golden Bears Capture Third Overtime Victory of Season at Univ. of New England

Golden Bears Capture Third Overtime Victory of Season at Univ. of New England
BIDDEFORD, Maine -- Damon Alston drained a game-tying 3-pointer in overtime among his 15 points on the afternoon, and then James Hock made two key free throws in the last 17 seconds, as the visiting Western New England University men's basketball team edged University of New England, 62-60, at Harold Alfond Forum on Saturday. The Golden Bears, who are 3-0 in overtime games this season, improve to 5-10 overall and 4-5 in the Commonwealth Coast Conference, while the Nor'easters fall to 3-13 and 2-7.

Rookie Devin Thompson scored 13 of his game-high 16 points after halftime to pace the Nor'easters, who also got 11 points from Charles Fenner III.

Freshman guard Sinclair Lewis tied his career-high of nine points in a WNE uniform, and sophomore Musa Elsir played a solid all-around game by finishing with nine points, five rebounds and three assists.

Trailing 60-57 with just under a minute to play in overtime, Western New England evened the score on a trey by Alston with 58 seconds on the clock. The Nor'easters failed to convert any of their six field goal attempts in the final five minutes of the game, yet still managed to lead until the final minute.

After UNE came up empty on its next possession, Hock (6 points, 5 rebounds) gained control of a missed WNE field goal attempt and was fouled. He missed the front end of the two-shot attempt but buried the next to give the Golden Bears a 61-60 advantage.

The Nor'easters were unable to tie the score on the ensuing trip up the floor despite having a decent look at the basket. UNE was forced to foul with 0:04 remaining, and Hock--a senior co-captain along with Alston--made 1 of 2. UNE had a desperation heave from halfcourt at the buzzer, but the attempt was off the mark.

The Golden Bears were able to force the extra 5-minute session when junior Dennis Rinaldi (9 points, 7 rebounds) dropped in a layup as time expired in regulation.

Trailing 30-27 at the break, Western New England started the second half with an 11-2 spurt--keyed by Rinald's five points and Alston had four--to build a 38-32 lead. UNE responded with seven straight points to re-assume the lead.

The remainder of regulation was back-and-forth with neither team leading by more than five points the rest of the way.

Junior Joshua Butler (7 points, 6 rebounds) gave UNE a 55-53 advantage on a layup with 27 seconds left. Western New England turned the ball over on its next possession and was forced to foul with six seconds left. UNE failed to convert the front end of a 1-and-1, setting the stage for Rinaldi's buzzer-beating layup.

Western New England out-rebounded UNE, 43-31, including a 17-6 margin on the offensive end.

(Editor's note: University of New England Athletics contributed to this report.)