For the second straight season, the Coffeyville men's basketball team left Concordia with a multiple-overtime victory. The Red Ravens overcame the Cloud County Thunderbirds in triple overtime, 93-89.
Wednesday's game was largely a close, defensive battle. Neither side built a lead of more than 8 points, with the Ravens never leading by any more than 5. By the end of regulation, the two teams were tied at just 67, with both teams failing to convert on their final opportunies. With both teams in the double bonus, free throws took an increased role in the overtime periods, with Coffeyville's Deng Mayar and Cloud's Justin Graham being the primary beneficiaries. The first overtime ended with the teams knotted up at 74.
Heroics were needed at the end of double overtime, with Coffeyville trailing by 2 and needing to go the length of the floor with just 5.5 seconds remaining. They'd find just that, as returning guard AJ McBride went the length of the floor and dropped a beautiful pass, leading to a game-tying, Dayshawn Wiley layup that led the game into its decisive period.
Triple overtime was much friendlier to the Ravens. Although leading scorer Love Bettis would foul out in the game's closing minutes, Coffeyville kept a cool head in maintaining a slim lead generated by a Wiley 3-pointer. Although some missed Coffeyville free throws made the game interesting, the Thunderbirds could not find it in themselves to bring it back, letting the clock expire and giving Coffeyville its thrilling, on-the-road win.
The return of injured starters Blaise Keita and McBride gave the Ravens a huge boost offensively. McBride, who hadn't played since November 2nd, was particularly impressive, recording 16 points in his return to the floor. However, it was the familiar combination of Bettis and Mayar that did most of the scoring, picking up 25 and 24 respectively.
The Raven men move to 6-8 on the season and break a 5-game losing skid. They'll be back in action Saturday, facing the Pratt Beavers in a men-only matchup. Pregame will start at 3:30 PM, with tip-off at 4PM on US98.1, KUSN.