WildCats Take Down Methodist after Horn Sends them to Overtime

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For immediate release – 11/15/2015 - #114
WildCats Take Down Methodist after Horn Sends them to Overtime

FAYETTEVILLE, NC – Evan Horn hit a three-point shot with 11 seconds left in regulation to tie the score, and the Randolph College men's basketball team outscored Methodist University by four in OT, as the WildCats opened the season with a 71-67 win on Sunday.

The WildCats were the first team on the board as Reid Jacoby finished his layup off a pass from Zach Desgain just 25 seconds in.  However, the two teams went cold over the next two minutes, as the Monarchs would be the next to score at 17:36, with a three by Davion Ayaberreno.  Josh Freund answered down the other end with a jumper, but the teams went cold once again.

The 'Cats were the first team in double-figures.  Seth Wimbish broke a tie with a shot from beyond the arc, to put the score at 11-8 with 8:13 left in the half.  Randolph continued to expand the lead the rest of the stanza, through contributions from several players.  Corey Brown, Rhyle Scott, Freund, and Ryan Fields scored, while Desgain added four points to push the advantage to 23-14.

But MU fought back, as Brandon Monk hit two three-point shots and a jumper inside the arc, to cut the deficit to two.   Then, with one second on the clock before halftime, Gordon Rogo knocked down a shot from distance to give the 'Cats a five-point lead at the intermission.

Coming out of the break, the two teams continued trading points early on.  Desgain and Rogo scored for the 'Cats while Ayaberreno and Jackson Whitley tallied for the Monarchs to keep the Randolph lead at five.  Following two minutes of scoreless action, Whitley cut the deficit further after sinking two free throws.

MU took the lead following five straight points, including another three by Monk.  Freund tied the score again, right before Mike Major finished a layup to take it back.  The teams continued exchanging points, until Freund gave the WildCats the lead back at 42-40 as he caught a pass from Corey Brown at 8:11.  Methodist came right back with seven straight.  Even though Randolph answered, the Monarchs continued to hold onto the lead.

With just under two minutes remaining, Major hit one of two free throws to put the score at 56-49 MU.  Jason Eddie came down and completed an old-fashioned three-point play, before Desgain sunk three from the line to cut the deficit to one.  Tabias Hilliard then knocked down a pair of his own on the other end, to set up Horn's heroics.

Eddie drove into the lane and kicked it out to Horn on the left wing.  The senior knocked it down, and the WildCats made a stop down the other end, sending the game into overtime.

Freund and Desgain started the extra period with a basket each to open up a four-point lead.  Blake Davis responded with an and-one play to cut the lead to one.  Wimbish then converted a pass from Desgain to put the score at 64-61.

Major answered with four of his own, to give the Monarchs their first lead of the overtime.  However, it would be their last, as Freund tied it with a free throw.  Desgain took the lead back with a pair of his own with just 49 seconds remaining.  Wimbish went 4-4 from the line over the remaining time to seal the victory.

Monk finished with a game-high 24 points for Methodist (1-1 overall).  Desgain led three 'Cats in double-figures.  Desgain scored 21 and Wimbish added 14.  Freund was the final member, tallying his first career double-double in his collegiate debut, with 13 and 11.  The 11 rebounds helped the WildCats out rebound the Monarchs by 13.

Randolph (1-0) returns to the RAD Center for its home opener on Wednesday night.  The WildCats host William Peace University at 7 p.m.