Bearcats Rally Past George Fox, 73-71, in Overtime

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Kyler McClary (Jr., Post, Hillsboro, OR/Glencoe HS) hit a 3-pointer with less than five seconds left in regulation and Ian Mansfield (Sr., Post, Hillsboro, OR/Century HS) sank two free throws with 5.2 seconds to go in overtime, as Willamette University defeated George Fox University, 73-71, at Cone Field House on Friday, Jan. 11. Willamette improved to 4-8 overall, 2-1 in the Northwest Conference. GFU dropped to 4-8, 0-3 in the NWC.

Willamette trailed 37-26 at halftime, after shooting just 39.1% (9 of 23) in the opening half. The Bruins extended their lead to 16 points, 47-31, with 17:00 remaining in the game.

WU cut the lead to eight points, 51-43, when Ricky Thompson (Fr., PG, Temecula, CA/Temecula Valley HS) sank a jumper with 11:02 left. The Bearcats eventually pulled within a single point, at 51-50 with 7:13 on the clock and at 55-54 with 5:11 to go.

The Bruins surged out to a 61-54 lead at the 3:38 mark, only to have WU close regulation with an 11-4 run. GFU held a 64-60 advantage following a free throw by Travis Toedtemeier with 25 seconds left.

Mike Smith (Sr., Wing, Talent, OR/Phoenix HS) cut the lead to two points on a layup with 13 second to go, then Brent Satern of GFU made the second of two free throws with nine seconds remaining. McClary's game-tying 3-pointer locked the score at 65-65 heading into overtime.

McClary also scored the first basket of the extra session on a jumper with 3:56 left. GFU tallied the next four points for a 69-67 lead. The Bearcats countered with a 4-0 run and led 71-69 at the 1:46 mark.

Taylor Martin hit a jumper for George Fox with 33 second left to tie the game, then Willamette held the ball for the final shot. Mansfield received a pass near the basket with about seven seconds left and was fouled while shooting with 5.2 seconds to go.

GFU called a timeout before each free throw, but Mansfield went 2 for 2 to give WU the lead. With two seconds left, Evan Atwater of George Fox was called for an offensive foul while trying to get past Smith near the sideline and the mid-court line. WU ran out the remainder of the clock.

Smith led all scorers with a career-high 23 points, while McClary added 22 points, five rebounds and two blocked shots. Mansfield contributed 11 points and seven boards, while Cameron Mitchell (So., Post, Portland, OR/Grant HS/U. of Redlands) topped all players with nine rebounds.

WU connected on 14 of 29 field goals (48.3%) in the second half and made 3 of 4 shots in overtime. The Bearcats were 4 of 10 on three-pointers and 7 for 8 at the line during the second period. Mansfield's free throws were the only charity shots for the 'Cats in overtime. For the game, Willamette was 16 of 19 at the free throw line.

George Fox placed four players in double figures, with Satern leading the way with 19 points. Toedtemeier tallied 13 points and was 4 of 6 on three-pointers. Atwater scored 12 points and Taylor Martin chipped in 11 points.

The Bruins shot 48.1% in the first half (13 of 27), but slipped to 34.8% (8 of 23) in the second half and went 2 of 5 in overtime. GFU made 6 of 11 three-pointers and 5 of 7 free throws during the first 20 minutes, before hitting just 2 of 11 trifectas and 12 of 22 free throws the rest of the way. The Bruins finished 17 of 29 (58.6%) on free throws for the night.

Willamette travels to Tacoma, Wash., to take on Pacific Lutheran University in Northwest Conference action on Saturday, Jan. 12. Game time is slated for 8 p.m. (PST).

Willamette University 73, George Fox University 71
Ian Mansfield sank the winning free throws against George Fox with 5.2 seconds left in overtime.

Ian Mansfield sank the winning free throws against George Fox with 5.2 seconds left in overtime.

Kyler McClary tied the game with less than five seconds left in regulation.

Kyler McClary tied the game with less than five seconds left in regulation.