LAKEWOOD, N.J. – In a game that featured 12 lead changes and 11 ties, and one that was played within two possessions throughout its entirety, two free throws with eight seconds left proved to be the difference as Georgian Court downed the University of the Sciences men's basketball team 65-63 on Wednesday night.
USciences took its second six-point advantage of the night, the largest of the contest, when a Flo Da-Silva 3-pointer made the score 58-52 with 7:06 remaining.
Georgian Court responded with an 11-2 run over 4:05 for the game's 12th lead change, only to have Da-Silva knot the score back up at 63 on yet another triple for an 11th tie with 1:12 to play.
University of the Sciences (11-8, 7-4) then forced a stop to give itself a chance to take a lead in the closing moments. An initial shot was off the mark but the Devils grabbed an offensive board, only to turn the ball over.
USciences then fouled a Georgian Court player, who kept his composure and nailed the two clutch free throws.
One final jumper to send the game to overtime was no good, clinching the Lions' victory.
To further illustrate the closeness of the contest, both teams attempted 55 field goals with Georgian Court making one more, 24-23. University of the Sciences made a season-high 7-of-12 3-pointers compared to just four for the Lions, who made three more free throws - 13-10.
Da-Silva tied his career-best with two triples en route to a team-high 18 points, and he fell two rebounds shy of his fourth double-double in five games.
With a steal Da-Silva moved into eighth in the program's single-season annals with 59, and with three assists the senior became just the 12th player in program history to surpass 300 in a career.
Will Gregorits was able to record his ninth double-double of the season, as grabbed 10 rebounds – to go along with 14 points - to move into ninth in program history with 758 for his career.
Casey made 3-of-5 3-pointers en route to 12 points, while Starr made 2-of-3 en route to eight.
Brendan Crawford also scored eight.
For University of the Sciences' second straight contest, neither team led by more than five points in the first half as each squad scored seven unanswered at one point to highlight 20 minutes in which there were six ties and six lead changes.
The Devils scored the final four points of the first half and opened the second with six of the first eight to complete a 12-2 flurry for the first six-point lead of the night, 36-30, when Da-Silva made a layup 3:27 out of the locker room.
Georgian Court came back with the next five points though and the game was played within four until USciences' second six-point advantage, which came when Da-Silva scored his fifth straight point.
University of the Sciences returns home for the first time in 11 days when it hosts Caldwell on Saturday, Jan. 27 at 3 p.m.