Chad Kline, Arkansas Tech University head men’s basketball coach, summed it up with the final two words of his post-game interview.
“I’m exhausted,” said Kline.
It took triple overtime to do it, but the Wonder Boys knocked Henderson State University out of first place in the Great American Conference men’s basketball standings by defeating the Reddies 126-122 at Tucker Coliseum in Russellville on Saturday.
“That Tucker Coliseum magic showed up,” said Kline. “You never know late in the game in this place. Credit our guys. They hung in there and made plays late. It was a gutty win.”
The score was tied 84-84 after regulation. A 3-pointer by ATU’s R.J. Glasper with 7.3 seconds left in overtime forced a second extra period with the score tied 96-96. It was knotted 111-111 going to the third overtime.
The Wonder Boys (10-6 overall, 6-4 GAC) took the lead for good on an acrobatic offensive rebound and put-back basket by Ke’Lyn Adams with 3:49 left in the third extra period.
Three-pointers by Cameron Kennedy and Ramses Sandifer helped ATU built a 121-114 edge with 2:18 to go.
The Wonder Boys made 5-of-8 free throws the rest of the way to end the Reddies’ six-game winning streak and earn their first victory against Henderson State since Feb. 8, 2017.
Glasper matched his season high with 35 points. He also dished out 10 assists.
Sandifer finished with 19 points, Adams had 17 points and Devante Foster contributed 16 points and 13 rebounds for ATU. Tony Hall added 13 points and Dillon Gooding poured in 10 points.
Chris Parker had a team-high 24 points for the Reddies (12-4, 7-3).
The Wonder Boys will entertain Southwestern Oklahoma State University in GAC action at Tucker Coliseum on Thursday, Jan. 23. Tip-off is planned for 7:30 p.m.
Tickets ($5 adults/$3 senior citizens and students) will be available at the door. Those with a valid ATU identification card will be admitted free of charge.
Radio station KCJC 102.3 FM and www.arkansastechsports.com will provide live coverage.