Drew McDonald made a three-pointer with 1.6 seconds left to lift the Northern Kentucky University men’s basketball team to a 64-63 victory over Oakland on Monday evening. The Norse improve to 25-8 overall and advance to Tuesday night’s Horizon League Championship game against Wright State. Oakland bows out of the tournament with a 16-17 record.

STATS LEADERS

  • McDonald recorded his 14th double-double of the season with 18 points and 11 rebounds. He also added five assists.
  • Jalen Tate finished with 14 points, five assists and two rebounds.
  • Tyler Sharpe added 10 points, five rebounds and two assists.
  • Chris Vogt had eight points and seven rebounds.
  • Dantez Walton also chipped in eight points, and he added four rebounds.

TURNING POINT

  • Trailing 63-61 with just under 10 seconds remaining, the Norse ran a little play to free up McDonald near the top of the key. Tate found McDonald, who buried a three-pointer with 1.6 seconds left to give NKU the 64-63 victory.

FIRST HALF SUMMARY

  • Oakland took a 16-5 lead at the first media timeout with 14:58 to play in the half.
  • The Golden Grizzlies went up by 17 points in the stanza, but NKU used an 11-0 run to cut the Oakland lead to 28-22 with 6:11 remaining.
  • The Norse went on an 8-0 run to get within two points at 36-34 with 2:08 to play.
  • A three-pointer by Sharpe with 40 seconds left in the half tied the game. The teams went into halftime knotted up at 37-37.
  • The Norse shot 14-of-32 (43.8 percent) from the floor during the half.
  • Oakland went 12-of-30 (40.0 percent) on field goals.
  • Sharpe led the Norse with 10 points, and Tate and Walton each chipped in eight points.
  • McDonald recorded seven points, four rebounds and four assists at the break.
  • The Norse had an 18-8 advantage in points in the paint, and NKU outscored Oakland 19-7 on fast-break points.

SECOND HALF SUMMARY

  • McDonald scored six-straight points to give NKU its first lead of the game, 43-41, with 16:19 to play.
  • NKU led 49-48 with 10:57 remaining. The Norse used a 9-0 run to go ahead 58-48 with 6:50 left on the clock. The run was capped by back-to-back layups by Chris Vogt.
  • Oakland battled back with a 13-0 run to take a 63-61 lead with 9.1 seconds remaining.
  • McDonald sank a three-pointer in the final seconds to lift NKU to a 64-63 victory.  
  • NKU went 12-of-34 (35.3 percent) on field goals in the half.
  • The Norse held Oakland to 8-of-27 (29.6 percent) shooting in the half.  

GAME NOTES

  • NKU advances to the championship game of the Horizon League Tournament for the second time in the past three seasons.
  • The Norse finished the game shooting 26-of-66 (39.4 percent).
  • NKU held Oakland to 20-of-57 (35.1 percent) on field goals.
  • The Norse had a 40-14 advantage in points in the paint and outscored Oakland 25-12 in fast-break points.

NEXT UP

  • Northern Kentucky plays Wright State in the championship game of the Horizon League Tournament Tuesday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Little Caesar’s Arena in Detroit, and the game will be broadcast on ESPN.

#TakeNotice

Ryan Wilker

Northern Kentucky University

Athletic Communications Graduate Assistant

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