Santa Clarita, CA -- Lance Reeves hit a game-tying three-pointer to force overtime and Devin Dyer scored seven of his team's 11 points in the extra period to lead The Master's College past Concordia of Oregon 74-71 Saturday evening in Bross Gym.
The hard-earned, thrilling victory extended the Mustangs' winning streak to a season-best five games and lifted the team's record to 10-3.
Reeves' (Visalia, CA) hurried shot from behind the arc somehow found the basket after glancing off the backboard, knotting the game at 63 with six seconds left in regulation. A last-second heave by Concordia's Adam Herman fell far short and the game went to overtime, the Mustangs' first extended work of the 2012-13 campaign.
Once there, Dyer (Temecula, OR) took over. He tied the game at 65 with a pair of free throws at the 3:25 mark, lengthened the Mustang advantage to 71-67 on a layup with 2:05 remaining and then scored his club's final three points from the charity stripe to put the contest away. The senior guard finished with a team-high 18 points.
Playing their first game in 15 days, the Mustangs came out sluggish against a tested Cavalier team that was coming off a tough, 80-76 win over Bethesda the night before. The Cavs tallied the game's first five points but then watched as the Mustangs found their bearings with a 9-0 burst for a four-point lead (9-5) with 16:07 left in the opening half. Junior Jason Logan (Spartanburg, SC) triggered the run with a three-pointer and Paul Brown (Kingston, Jamaica) finished it off with a short jumper.
However, the visitors returned the favor over the next three-plus minutes, holding the Mustangs scoreless while ripping off 10 consecutive points to grab a 15-9 advantage at the 12:37 mark. A Leif Karlberg (Anchorage, AK) three-pointer stopped the Cavs' run and fueled a 9-0 Mustang skein, vaulting TMC in front 18-15 on a Chris Patureau (Houston, TX) layup with nine minutes left in the half.
Although the game was tied at 18 less than a minute later, the Mustangs didn't trail the rest of the half, thanks to some marksmanship from behind the arc. Logan snapped the deadlock with a layup at the 7:31 mark, Karlberg hit a medium-range jumper, and Logan capped the 6-0 spurt with another layup at the 5:55 mark for a six-point lead. The Cavs drew within 26-24 on a Willy Ligon charity toss with 3:01 remaining but a Karlberg trifecta extended the margin to five points 18 seconds later.
A Ligon layup with just under a minute left before halftime pulled the visitors to within 29-28 but a Logan Quinn (Little Rock, AR) trey gave the Mustangs a 32-28 lead that they carried into the break. Over the opening 20 minutes, the Mustangs shot just 39% from the field but the Cavaliers managed just 35% accuracy. Logan paced the Mustangs with 10 points while Ligon led all scorers with 14.
Ligon added two more jumpers in the first two minutes of the second half and combined with a Herman three-point play, vaulted the Cavaliers into a 35-32 lead. But, the Mustangs, paced by Dyer, retaliated with a nice run of their own, reeling off nine straight points in a 2:31 span to move ahead 41-35. A Dyer layup keyed the burst and he added five more points, including a pair of free throws at the 15:23 mark to cap it off.
However, in a topsy-turvy contest that featured six ties and nine lead changes, the momentum suddenly shifted to the Cavaliers who fought off fatigue and, led by eight points from Herman, outscored the Mustangs 10-2 in a two-minute window to nab a 45-43 lead with 13:03 left to play.
But, in a preview of what was to come over the game's final 10 minutes, the Mustangs struck back, tying the game at 47 on a Karlberg trifecta and then moving in front 49-47 on a Patureau put-back at the 9:42 mark. It capped off a tenacious 90 seconds of hard-nosed board work by Patureau, who yanked down five offensive rebounds in that span. His two free throws at the 8:29 mark put the Mustangs in front 52-49 but they couldn't shake the Cavs who answered with a 5-0 skein for a 54-52 advantage at the 7:32 mark.
Back came the Mustangs, though, as they held the visitors without a point over a 3:32 span while tallying six straight points to go up 58-54 with 4:34 left to play. A Quinn layup fueled the skein and a Patureau free throw finished it off. But, just as quickly, the Cavaliers turned the tables, ripping off five straight points to reclaim the advantage at 59-58 on a Ligon trey with 3:13 showing on the clock.
After an Austin Loeb (Cypress, CA) layup gave the Mustangs a one-point lead 27 seconds later, the Cavs answered with a Justyn Searle layup (2:32 remaining) and two Ligon charity tosses with 21 ticks left in regulation.
On what proved to be the Mustangs' final possession of regulation, it didn't look promising when Karlberg missed a three-pointer. But, Patureau, who wound up with a staggering nine offensive rebounds, yanked one more out of the air, got it to Reeves who then buried his improbable three-pointer from deep in the left-hand corner, tying the game and sending Bross Gym into a frenzy. All that did was set up Dyer for his overtime heroics.
Karlberg complemented Dyer's team-high total (18 points) with 13 of his own, while Logan, who was hampered by a first-half calf injury, and Loeb pitched in with ten points apiece. Patureau finished with nine points and a season-high 13 rebounds.
The Mustangs get one day off before finishing off 2012 on Monday with a 4:00pm matinee against Bethesda.