Donlan’s Putback Gives YSU 92-91 Victory in Double Overtime

Matt Donlan (Photo by Caitlyn Brown)
Matt Donlan (Photo by Caitlyn Brown)

Matt Donlan's tip-in with 1.2 seconds remaining gave the Youngstown State men's basketball team a 92-91 victory in double overtime over UIC on Tuesday evening at the Beeghly Center.

Donlan's putback was the biggest of YSU's game-changing effort on the offensive glass in overtime. Jorden Kaufman scored all six of Youngstown State's points on offensive rebounds in the first overtime, and the Penguins ended the night on a 7-0 run with all seven points coming on second chances.

All five starters for Youngstown State scored in double figures, and Cameron Morse and Francisco Santiago played all 50 minutes. That duo combined for 49 points, with Morse scoring 28 points and Santiago adding 21. Kaufman finished with 11 points, with nine of those coming in the overtime periods, and a career-high 18 rebounds.

Dikembe Dixson scored 40 points on 39 field-goal attempts, the most by a player in the country this season, but he was 5-for-13 from the free-throw line, and the Flames went 9-for-24 as a team. YSU countered with a 17-for-21 effort.

Youngstown State trailed by nine twice in regulation, and UIC led 91-85 with 1:23 remaining in double overtime before the Penguins went to work on the offensive glass. Jordan Andrews made three free throws after rebounding a miss and being fouled on a 3-point attempt, and YSU was given possession after an out-of-bounds call was overturned on a video review.

Kaufman followed with another offensive rebound and basket to make the score 91-90, and Dixson missed two free throws with 17 seconds left for UIC. The Flames forced a miss by Morse, but Donlan was there for the tip in traffic to put the Penguins up 92-91 with 1.2 seconds remaining. Lance Whitaker's desperation heave hit the top of the backboard.

Youngstown State's largest lead of the game was four, and it came at 11-7 at the 14:46 mark of the first half on a Sidney Umude layup. UIC went on a 17-4 run over the next five minutes to go up 24-15, and the Penguins led just once until the final seconds of the first overtime.

YSU trimmed the deficit down to three, 29-26, on a Santiago basket with 6:38 left in the first half, and the Penguins tied the game at 33 on a three-point play by Morse at the 4:01 mark. The score was tied again at 35, and the teams were deadlocked at 39 at halftime.

UIC led for nearly 15 minutes in the second half before YSU scored the final six points of the half to force overtime. YSU's only lead of the half came when Umude hit a jumper at the 16:53 mark to put the Penguins ahead 45-44. UIC scored 18 seconds later to reclaim a one-point lead, and the Flames built their lead back to as many as nine, 66-57 with 8:56 to go.

UIC's lead was 70-62 with 6:54 remaining, and the Flames held a 75-69 edge before Santiago hit two free throws at the 2:58 mark to start the final run for the Penguins. The sophomore point guard made two more free throws with 1:38 left to get YSU within a pair, and Morse tied the game with 1:09 left on a jumper.

Kaufman had all six of YSU's points on offensive rebounds in the first overtime. His first tied the score at 77-77, and his second came after a Dixson 3-pointer have put the Flames up three. Kaufman's third putback of the period came with eight seconds remaining, and it put the Penguins up 81-80. Whitaker was fouled on a drive by Andrews with 2.6 seconds left, and he made the second of two free throws to tie the game at 81-81 and force the second overtime.

YSU led 84-83 when Andrews split a pair of free throws with 3:46 left in double overtime, but the Flames scored eight of the next nine points to go up 91-85 on a Whitaker basket with 1:23 remaining. Andrews' three free throws followed, which began the 7-0 run to end the game.

Youngstown State will begin its Wisconsin road swing at Green Bay on Saturday at 2 p.m. Eastern.