Winter Scores Career-High 36, Reaches 1,000-Point Mark, in Cortland's 108-105 OT Win vs. Buffalo St.
CORTLAND, N.Y. – Junior Jesse Winter (Rockville Centre/South Side) scored a career-high 36 points, including his 1,000th career point, as Cortland defeated visiting Buffalo State in overtime, 108-105. The Red Dragons complete the regular season 19-6 overall and in second place in the SUNYAC with a 14-4 mark. Cortland will host Plattsburgh in the SUNYAC quarterfinals Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Buffalo State (18-7, 11-7 SUNYAC) finishes in a three-way tie for third place with Geneseo and Brockport in the league standings. Since the Bengals were swept during the season by both teams, Buffalo State will be the fifth seed and will play at Brockport in the quarterfinals Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Winter and junior guards Jeremy Smith (Bronx/Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy) and Brian Manning (Elmira/Southside) combined for 85 points. Winter hit 11-of-18 shots, 5-of-8 from three-point range, and 9-of-11 free throws. He also shared the team lead with junior Harrison Hefele (Greenlawn/Friends Academy) with seven assists.
Smith scored 26 points, two shy of matching his career high, and dished out four assists. He hit 10-of-20 shots overall and 4-of-10 treys. Manning made 8-of-14 shots, 5-of-10 from three-point range, and finished with 23 points. Cortland scored its highest point total since winning 108-102 in overtime at Plattsburgh on Feb. 4, 1995.
Winter became the 20th player in team history to reach the career 1,000-point mark with his ninth point of the game, a layup with 2:24 left in the first half. He now has 1,027 points and is the ninth Red Dragon to score 1,000 points in three seasons or less.
Cortland shot 52 percent from the field and made 16-of-35 (46 percent) of its three-pointers, one shy of the school single-game record of 17 three-pointers set earlier this season versus SUNYIT.
Jake Simmons (Rochester/School of the Arts) led Buffalo State with 32 points and three steals. He made six of the Bengals' seven three-pointers. Nicol McLean (Amherst) totaled 26 points, eight rebounds and four assists and Ahmed Nagaya (Bronx/Astor Collegiate Academy) scored 17 points and led the Bengals with 12 rebounds and five assists.
Cortland trailed 45-41 at halftime but took its largest lead at 86-77 on two Winter free throws with 5:03 left in regulation. Buffalo State drew within one at 91-90 on a Nagaya layup with 2:02 remaining, but Smith hit a jumper with 1:28 left to put Cortland up three.
McLean made a foul shot with 1:15 left but missed his second attempt and the Bengals trailed by two. Cortland ran the shot clock down before missing a shot with 39 seconds left and Buffalo State controlled the rebound. McLean then made the tying jumper with his foot on the three-point arc with 15 seconds remaining. Cortland called timeout with eight seconds left and played for the winning shot, but Smith's jumper with two seconds left missed the mark.
Cortland trailed by three early in overtime, but eventually tied the game at 96-96 on a Winter layup with 3:46 left and took the lead for good on a Manning three-pointer with 3:11 left. Manning hit another trey with 2:10 remaining and Cortland led by six.
Buffalo State fought back to within two on a McLean jumper with 32 seconds left. Manning made two foul shots at the 28-second mark, but Anthony Hamer (Brooklyn/Bishop Laughlin) hit a jumper with 17 seconds left. Winter made the first of two free throws with 11 seconds left. Down three, the Bengals elected to go for a quick two points and got them on a Hamer layup with 4.4 seconds left.
Winter was fouled on a long inbounds pass before any time elapsed and hit both foul shots to put Cortland up three. Buffalo State, out of timeouts, quickly raced the ball up the court. McLean's pressured attempt at a tying three-pointer grazed off the front of the rim and time expired.
Before the game, Cortland honored guard Nick Sutedjo (Webster/Webster Schroeder), its lone senior, prior to his final regular-season home game. Sutedjo finished the game with two assists.