Marian University men’s basketball (2-7, 2-3 NACC) rallied from a five-point deficit in the final 1:53 of regulation only to fall to Lakeland 78-76 in double overtime.
Junior Kelvin Jones provided the offensive spark in that final minute and 53-second stretch scoring five points to force the first overtime of the game. The opening overtime saw the Muskies jump out to an early four-point lead but a pair of buckets from senior Alex Manhardt and a jumper from Jones matched Lakeland to force a second overtime.
Marian would lead most of the second overtime but a jumper from the Muskies with just seven seconds remaining proved to be the game-winner in a 78-76 final.
Manhardt went on to finish the game with a game-high 27 points and 19 rebounds, 16 on the defensive end. Jones joined Manhardt in double-digit scoring with 12 points.
The Lakeland offense was clicking in the opening half as they went on to shoot 12-27 (.44) from the field, while also holding MU to 10-32 (.313) shooting as the Muskies led 31-24 at the half.
The Muskies opened the second half with a pair of free throws to build their largest lead of the game at nine with a 33-24 score and 18:33 left to play. A dunk from Manhardt, however, provided a spark for the Sabres as Marian went on a 9-0 lead to tie the game at 33-33 with 15:20 remaining in regulation.
Marian controlled play down low outrebounding the Muskies 52-50 and outscoring Lakeland in the paint by a 38-30 margin. The free throw line was once again unkind to the Sabres as Marian would only go 12-28 (.429) from the charity stripe.
Marian closes out the first half of the season on the road at Beloit Wednesday, Dec. 20 for a 7 p.m. tip.