By BRAD KEITH
SAN ANGELO (February 10, 2016) — Stedman Allen buried an Angelo State (18-4, 6-4) 3-pointer while falling out of bounds as time expired in the first overtime, and Tarleton State (16-7, 5-5) couldn’t get one of three shots in the paint to fall in the closing seconds of the second overtime in a 87-86 Lone Star Conference loss at Stephens Arena Wednesday night.
Michael Hardge drove inside in the final seconds but was blocked from behind. EJ Reed corralled the loose ball and left a one-handed floater just short while being hacked across the arm with no call. The second rebound got tipped out to Quay King, who sprinted the other way as the final couple seconds clicked away.
Tarleton led by 16 in regulation and seven in the first overtime, but Angelo State had an answer both times.
A big part of the answer in regulation was center Omari Gudul, who made what many on scene were calling the highlight of the season for ASU when he went coast-to-coast and even bounced the ball behind his back before throwing down a dunk through the foul of Tarleton forward Malcolm Hamilton.
Reed amassed a career high 26 points for Tarleton, including five straight points to give the Texans a 79-72 lead in the first overtime.
But ASU scored six straight before two Xavier Smith free throws set up the final ASU possession. The first attempt at tying the game missed the mark, but Allen grabbed the backside rebound, retreated to the sideline then fired away as his momentum took him out of bounds. the shot hit the rim as time ran out, bounced up, then fell through the net.
The review of the shot took several minutes as officials struggled with the video equipment while the small but rowdy crowd and both teams waited anxiously. Finally, an official held up both arms, signifying the 3-pointer was good.
Tarleton scored first in the second overtime, too, but Allen and Tre Bennett each hit jumpers to put ASU on top 85-83. Nosa Ebomwonyi answered with what appeared to be his biggest shot of the season at the moment, a right wing 3-pointer that put Tarleton back on top.
Fittingly since Gudul was the one who changed the way the night was going for ASU, he was also the one who hit the game winner in the paint with 1:02 left.
Tarleton had the ball for pretty much the rest of the game, as Hardge missed a 3-point shot late in the shot clock, then grabbed his own rebound after it was batted outside. He then drove in for the final theatrics in the paint, which included a lot of contact but no foul calls.
Hamilton scored 12 for Tarleton, which fell to 17-3 the last two years when he reaches double figures. Hardge had 14 and Charles Hill 12.
ASU had five in double digits – Stedman with 17, Bennett, Prince Foster and Gudul with 14 each and King with 11.
The two point guards put on a show with Hardge dealing eight assists – he leases the league in that category – and Bennett dealing six for ASU.
Tarleton returns home to take on Texas A&M-Kingsville Saturday, while ASU hits the road to battle Texas A&M-Commerce.