Men's Basketball Drops Triple-OT Thriller to Central Michigan, 100-94

Garrett Covington (Photo by Mike Yourstowsky)
Garrett Covington (Photo by Mike Yourstowsky)

Garrett Covington recorded his first-career double-double and was one of four Penguins to score in double figures as the Youngstown State men's basketball team fell 100-94 to Central Michigan in a triple overtime thriller on Tuesday evening at Beeghly Center.

The Penguins fall to 3-7 overall while the Chippewas improve to 7-2.

Covington led all scorers with 26 points and also grabbed 13 rebounds. Junior Devin Morgan scored 25 points, 21 of which came after halftime, and had four assists. Sophomore Naz Bohannon also notched a double-double with 14 points and 19 rebounds while Donel Cathcart III chipped in 12 points.

Leading the way for the Chippewas was Larry Austin with 24 points and 11 rebounds and Shawn Roundtree with 23 points. Rob Montgomery posted 17 points and Dallas Morgan added 15.

Covington scored 13 first-half points, including 10 of YSU's first 14 of the game. He was 4-for-5 from the field and connected on all three of his three-point attempts in the first 20 minutes.

The Penguins out-rebounded the Chippewas 28-14 and had just six turnovers in the second half after committing 14 before halftime.

YSU converted four of its first five field goal attempts to jump out to an early 9-2 lead at the 16:26 mark of the first half. The Chippewas battled back to tie the game at 16-16 with 11:36 left and took their first lead at 23-21 with 7:40 remaining before halftime.

The game was tied 21-21 with 8:18 remaining before CMU used a 21-8 run to build their largest lead of the half, 42-29 with 3:26 left before intermission. The Chippewas used pressure defense to mount their advantage, scoring 24 points off 14 YSU turnovers in the first 20 minutes of play.

The Penguins ended the half on a 9-3 run of their own to cut the deficit to 45-38 at halftime.

The Chippewas scored the first four points of the second half as their lead swelled back to 11 at 49-38. However, the Penguins answered by scoring 16 of the next 23 points to cut the CMU advantage to 57-54 at the 11:23 mark.

A three from Morgan tied the game 61-61 at the 8:05 mark before CMU scored the next five points to build a 66-61 lead with 5:38 remaining in the game. A tip-in by Noe Anabir cut the lead to three at 66-63 before another three-pointer from Morgan tied the game at 66-66 with 4:09 left.

The Chippewas went back in front 68-66 on a jumper by Rob Montgomery at the 3:06 mark but YSU tied the game again on a basket by Morgan with just under a minute to play. After a CMU timeout with 24.9 seconds remaining, Austin's driving layup was off the mark and a last-second heave from Covington missed as well to send the game to overtime.

Trailing 76-73 with 2:33 remaining in overtime, YSU cut the deficit to two with a Covington free throw and tied it on a floating layup in the lane by Morgan with 12.4 seconds remaining.

A traveling violation on the Chippewas with just under two seconds left in the first overtime gave YSU a chance to win it, but Covington's attempt from half-court was after the buzzer. 

CMU scored the first two points of the second overtime before a three from Morgan put YSU in front 79-78. That marked the Penguins' first lead since the 10:02 mark of the first half.

A layup by Covington gave YSU an 82-81 advantage at the 1:11 mark and the Penguins had a chance to extend the lead to three, but two missed free throws with 18 seconds left kept the YSU lead at one. CMU's Dallas Morgan split two free throws with 11.6 seconds left to tie the game at 82-82 and eventually send it to a third overtime.

The teams exchanged baskets to start the third overtime before Central Michigan went on a 9-0 run and would never relinquish the lead. YSU cut the deficit to five at 95-90 with 32.2 seconds remaining but would get no closer. The Chippewas outscored the Penguins 18-12 in the final session to secure the 100-94 victory.

Youngstown State closes out its two-game homestand against Western Michigan, Saturday, Dec. 8. Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m.