CUA Wins in 67-64 OT Thriller
Fumai hits 21 for the game
WASHINGTON - The Catholic University men's basketball team (15-4, 7-4 CAC) knew it was in for a battle Wednesday evening at the DuFour Center against the Marymount Saints (10-9, 5-6 CAC). The last time the two squads met, CUA eked out the victory despite an incredibly rough game that saw three technicals and an ejection. On Wednesday, CUA was in a different boat with a nine-point lead at the halftime looking to be in control. The Saints came back and forced overtime but the Cards were able to come away with the 67-64 win.
During the first half, the Cards slowly built their lead thanks to 12 points by senior Scott Fumai (Rockville, Md./Good Counsel) and eight from Stephen Wheeler (Silver Spring, Md./Good Counsel). A rough stretch in the final minute gave the Saints a chance to get back in the game with two missed free throws, two fouls and a turnover to close out the half for CUA making it 34-25.
The second half started out much like the end of the first as the Cards allowed an 8-0 run and then another 5-0 run to bring the Saints within three at 12:08. From that point on it was survival of the fittest as CUA clung to its small advantage due to pressure defense that spread out the Cardinal offense. At 6:26 a three by Bryant Majors tied it up at 55. The Cards tried to battle back and went up by as much as five but costly turnovers and missed shots sent it to overtime tied at 62.
Marymount scored first in the extra period with Corey Diamond hitting two free throws. A layup by Patrick Dwyer (Williamsburg, Va./Walsingham Academy) marked the eighth and final tie of the game. The Saints came down with a chance but a turnover gave CUA the ball and Scott Fumai hit a jumper to put the Cards ahead. With the Saints missing a three Dwyer put up a shot to give CUA a two-possession lead but it rolled off the rim and into the hands of Wheeler who was fouled on the rebound. Wheeler hit one of his shots and sealed the win as Marymount's desperation three was off giving the Cards the 67-64 victory.
Fumai had 21 points and six rebounds while Wheeler played strong down low against a tough Saint front line notching 14 points and as many boards for the double-double. Nick Olivero (Fairfax, Va./W.T. Woodson) added 15 points for the Cards who shot 41 percent from the game. CUA committed one more turnover than Marymount but outrebounded the visitors 42-41.
The Cardinals will go on the road to Hood College on Saturday for a game against the league-leading Blazers.