Siena Falls Short in Triple Overtime Heartbreaker
Siena lost 93-89 in triple overtime to the visiting Monmouth Hawks on Sunday afternoon at the Times Union Center.
Ahsante Shivers fouled Austin Tilghman with 3.1 seconds to go in the third overtime session and he converted two free throws to give the Hawks the lead for good. Tilghman was also fouled after Siena turned the ball over and pushed the margin of victory to four on two additional free throws.
Jordan Horn connected on a jumper to tie the game at 89 with 4.3 seconds left in triple overtime. Many thought the game was headed to a fourth overtime until Shivers was unaware of the score and fouled Tilghman.
In a back-and-forth affair, which featured 18 ties and 18 lead changes, Monmouth took a 36-34 lead into halftime. After Tilghman connected on a pair of free throws with one minute left, Thomas Huerter, Jr. sank a short jumper to tie the game at 66 and send the game to overtime.
Shivers put the Saints ahead with a layup with 30.1 seconds to go in the first overtime, but Ray Salnave responded and hit two free throws to tie the game at 74 with 6.1 seconds left, sending the game to a second overtime period.
Monmouth jumped out to an 85-80 lead with 25.8 seconds remaining in the second overtime. With that, many fans made their way to the exits, but the Saints were not done yet. Christian Bentley converted an old-fashioned three-point play and Horn buried two free throws to send the game to a third overtime tied at 85.
Tilghman led the Hawks with 24 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists, and 4 steals in the victory.
Siena was led by Khalil Richard who scored 23 points off the bench before fouling out. Evan Fisher tallied 19 points and grabbed 5 rebounds. Horn poured in 14 points and corralled 4 rebounds. Shivers added 10 points and 6 rebounds.
Huerter, Jr. and Prince Oduro stuffed the stat sheet for the Saints before they both fouled out. Huerter, Jr. recorded 9 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals, while Oduro finished with 6 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 blocks.
Jimmy Patsos commented on his team’s performance in his postgame press conference. “This is Shivers’ 27th game of the year, it’s a three-overtime game and he played a lot last year,’” Patsos said. “That’s why I wanted to be very clear. I’ll take responsibility as the head coach. You can’t control everything. We just lost a hard basketball game. This thing is far from over because I saw a little more fight from my team that may have even surprised me.”
With the loss, Siena fell to 8-21 overall, 4-12 in the MAAC, while Monmouth improved to 10-18 on the season, 6-10 in conference play.
The Saints will return to action on Wednesday night when they host Fairfield for Senior Night at 7pm. Kadeem Smithen will be honored before the game. The Stags enter the contest at 12-15 overall and 7-9 in the MAAC. Fairfield is coming off a 102-98 double overtime win over Quinnipiac on Saturday. The Stags are led by MAAC Preseason Player of the Year, Tyler Nelson, who is averaging 21.9 points, 4 rebounds, and 3.3 assists per game. In the win over the Bobcats, Nelson became the all-time leading scorer in Fairfield’s program history. Siena will look to avenge an earlier loss to the Stags this season. Fairfield came away with a 78-65 win in Bridgeport, CT on February 5.