The Barton Community College men's basketball team rallied from a seventeen point deficit Monday night in Chanute, getting two buzzer beating shots as the 9th ranked Cougars prevailed 86-85 in overtime at Neosho County Community College.
Trailing by seventeen points midway through the first half, the Cougars cut it to thirteen at the break and led by as much as five with six minutes to play before needing a Leondre Washington offensive rebound put-back to beat the regulation horn in forcing overtime deadlocked at 75. Trading leads throughout the overtime, the Panthers left the door open with a 1-of-2 trip to the line with 6.9 seconds left setting up Diovonte Caldwell's pull-up trey in finding nothing but net for the game winner with .8 seconds on the clock.
The fifth straight victory over the Panthers in the series snaps Barton's two game skid in conference play improving to 2-2 and 11-1 on the season. Neosho drops their second straight home overtime loss to a ranked opponent in falling to 2-2 and 8-4 overall. Barton will have the holiday break away from competition until January 5 in hosting Butler Community College in a 7:30 p.m. tip-off.
Washington and Akeem White paced the Cougars with twenty-six points each, Washington with a career high to go along with his regulation heroics on put-back from about eight feet from the rim while crashing to the floor. Caldwell finished with twelve points and despite the off-night shooting rose to the occasion for the game winner while stuffing the stat sheet in a near triple-double with a team high eight assists and seven rebounds. Martin Vogts rounded out the double-digit scoring with ten points in leading the squad with four steals. Mavrick Gildyard finished with just three points but tied Caldwell with the seven rebounds, four on the offensive glass in critical late times in the game.
Five Panthers reached double figures with Brian Tolefree leading with nineteen. Coming off the bench Jay Miller added seventeen with Sia Fisher scoring sixteen while hauling down nine rebounds leading the Panthers to a two rebound advantage. Behind three early three-pointers, Magic Reliford scored eleven as did Jae-Min Yang in coming off the bench.
Trailing by seventeen midway through the first half, the Cougars cut it to thirteen at the break but couldn't slice into the lead until under fifteen to play when Washington took over the game.
Washington buried three treys in the first ten minutes of the second frame, in addition to, converting a free throw on his third triple to spur the Cougars to within 59-55 on the top side of the ten minute mark.
Following a Panther 1-of-2 trip to the line, White drew the Cougars to within one on a step-back jumper then hauled down a big offensive rebound with the put-back. One minute later Washington was perfect on a pair of free throws for Barton's first lead since White's opening bucket to begin the game. Another Washington trip to the line and Vogts' pair of charity tosses expanded the margin to Barton's largest lead of five with 5:44 to play.
Barton later left the door open on a four point lead missing on two trips to the line with Neosho battling back to tie it up at 67 with under three to play. Exchanging blows for the next few minutes, Neosho looked to snap its four game losing streak in the series in breaking the Barton press for a 75-72 lead with twenty-four seconds remaining. Washington made the first of a two shot free throw opportunity but missed the second with Gildyard coming up with a big offensive rebound with 8.8 ticks on the clock. The Cougars came up empty on a couple of shots with the last rebounding out to about eight feet from the glass where Washington secured and let fly a quick release while crashing to the floor sending the game to overtime.
White led the Cougars through the first three minutes of the extra time, converting a pair of free throws and a tough low block bucket yet the Cougars trailed by one. Following a scoreless ninety-seconds and Barton still trailing by one, Washington gave the Cougars possession in drawing an offensive foul call with 22 seconds remaining but the team came up empty on a pair of three-point misses. The Cougars were called for an offensive foul with 6.9 seconds left in sending Neosho to the line but a 1-of-2 trip left the door open for Caldwell's game winner.