TYLER -- The UT Tyler Patriots have something extra to be thankful for on Thursday!
Stephan Tarpley’s first shot of the game was a buzzer-beater that lifted the UT
Tyler men to a 59-58 win over Austin College in the Patriots’ home opener before
450 fans on Wednesday night at the Herrington Patriot Center.
As time expired, Tarpley recovered his own deflected pass and buried a floater from the right side of the lane. While fans rushed
the court, game officials reviewed video of the play to confirm that the shot
The win evens UT Tyler's record on the young season to 1-1 and
avenges the Patriots’ season opening loss to Austin College. It also gives the
men momentum headed into their American Southwest Conference opener on Saturday
against Hardin-Simmons in Abilene.
The ‘Roos’ Josh Saunders knocked down a free throw with the
game tied and eight seconds to play and, after missing the second free throw,
Larry Carpenter ran the ball up court and called a timeout with 3.9 seconds
Austin College poked the ball away after the inbound pass,
but Tarpley managed to recover it and score to send the home crowd into a
Jacob McDonald led all players with 19 points for UT Tyler.
Lance Murphy recorded 13 on the night for the Patriots while Darren Houliston added
UT Tyler took an early 7-4 lead after a three-pointer by Lance
Murphy, but Austin College stiffened up their defense and scored four-straight
baskets to take a 13-7 lead with 13:28 left in the first half.
McDonald, who scored 11 points in the first half, heated up
for the Patriots with three straight baskets and tied the game on back-to-back
possessions at 23-23 with 6:27 remaining.
The Patriots took the lead on their next possession on a
baseline jumper by Tucker. UT Tyler proceeded to build an eight-point lead on
shots by Darren Houliston, Spencer Terry and Murphy, which prompted a timeout
by Austin College.
Tucker kept the Patriots’ offensive momentum going with his
second score of the game, following the ‘Roos timeout to give UT Tyler a
10-point lead and the Patriots finished the half on a 13-5 run to take a 36-28 lead
into the break.
The Patriots shot 56.5 percent from the floor and held
Austin College to 35.5 percent from the floor.
College opened the second
half on a 9-1 run to tie the game at 37. Ransom Okpala buried a three-point
shot from the left wing with 15:48 left to even the score. The ‘Roos then took
a 43-39 lead on a three-straight baskets from Antoine Thompson.
Both teams traded shots over the next three minutes, but a
three-point shot by Murphy cut Austin College’s lead to one with nine minutes
to play. Houliston then evened the score at 51 with 6:15 to play on a three
from the top of the arc.
Austin College held a two-point lead with less than a minute
left in regulation and, after a ‘Roos miss, Tarpley was fouled battling for a
rebound. He stepped to the free throw line with 28 seconds to play and knocked
down two free throws to tie the game at 57-57.
The ‘Roos regained the lead on the next possession on a free
throw by Saunders that set-up the last second play for the Patriots.
Saunders led Austin
College with 18 points
and seven rebounds. Thompson followed with 11 points for the ‘Roos, who fall to
2-3 on the year.
The Patriots head west to Abilene this weekend to begin American
Southwest Conference play against Hardin-Simmons and McMurry before returning home
Dec. 1 to face Concordia.