The defensive stalemate actually started with a contested three pointer by Depaul’s Jalen Coleman-Lands. This wasn’t responded for a couple of minutes as Tech had a ton of difficulty with the Demon’s defense. The scoring actually started with seldom scoring Avery Benson hitting a critical three point shot. Moretti added one as well and the score was tied after 4 minutes.
Benson didn’t only hit a three-point shot but finished an and-one opportunity to put the Red Raiders up 9-6 with 14 minutes remaining in the first half. Benson filled up a ton of minutes with freshman superstar Jahmi’us Ramsey out with a hamstring injury and guard Davide Moretti in foul trouble. Clarence Nadolny and Chris Clarke added some scoring to put the Red Raiders up 16-9 with 10 minutes left.
The Blue Demons kept with the Red Raiders as they kept the score close, closing in as the game went on. They even took the lead at a couple of different junctures leading into the end of the first half. The Red Raider defense stayed strong as with some strong interior offense, the Red Raiders went into the half with a 26-23 lead.
The next four minutes were very back and forth as the Red Raiders and Blue Demons played some very tough defense. Terrence Shannon Jr. sparked the scoring during this run with two lay-ins but the Demons countered with a couple baskets of their own as at the 16 minute mark the game was tied at 30.
Both teams were very tough the next 5 minutes as Shannon Jr. continued to add points as he hit another 2 free throws. Kyler Edwards also got in on the scoring off of a huge pass from Chris Clarke in transition. The game continued to be a stalemate through the 12 minute media timeout as the score was 34-34.
The game went back and forth for a little bit as Davide Moretti hit a pair of free throws and Shannon Jr. hit another lay-up to keep the Red Raiders up by two. With 5 minutes left in the game, Kyler Edwards hit a three-point jumper to put the Red Raiders up by 5, forcing Depaul to call a timeout. Terrence Shannon Jr. hit another three-pointer with 3 minutes left to put the Red Raiders up by six with a score of 50-44.
Two Red Raider turnovers helped the Blue Demons pull within two points with a score of 52-50 with 25 seconds left in the game. The Blue Demons hit a three-pointer with just a few seconds left to send the game into overtime.
Moretti started the overtime off with two free throws making the score 55-53. A bunch of empty possessions for both teams ended when Terrence Shannon Jr. pump-faked and scooped the lay-up home to force Depaul into a timeout, up 57-53.
A three pointer by Depaul and a foul by Moretti allowed Depaul to take a 58-57 lead and after back-to-back three pointers by both teams, Depaul led by a score of 61-60 with 30 seconds left in the overtime period.
A key miscue by the Red Raiders allowed the Blue Demons to have another possession up 1 point with just 21 seconds left. Two free throws sealed it for the Blue Demons and the final score ended up in favor of Depaul.
This game will be looked at later in the season as one that the Red Raiders could have won. These tough games will be looked at as learning experience for the Red Raiders that will be beneficial for them later on. At full strength, the Red Raiders can and will defeat teams like this, just give Coach Beard and that amazing coaching staff time with all of these newcomers.
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