RICHMOND, Ky. – Senior Glenn Cosey banked in a 37-footer right before the buzzer to give the Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball team an improbable 79-78 win over visiting Southeast Missouri Saturday night in McBrayer Arena.
Eastern Kentucky (16-7, 7-3 OVC) trailed by 10 points with just under four minutes to play before making a furious rally. Senior Orlando Williams lit the spark with back-to-back buckets, including a three-pointer, within a span of 20 seconds.
Fellow senior Marcus Lewis then hit his only trifecta of the game and suddenly it was a two-point contest, 72-70, with 2:45 left. The Colonels finally leveled the game with 55 ticks left behind a Tarius Johnson tip-in.
Southeast Missouri (12-11, 3-6) refused to give up the lead as Lucas Nutt hit a floater with 39 seconds left. Cosey hit a pair of free throws with 26 seconds remaining, but SEMO’s Tyler Stone netted a putback with 6.6 seconds on the clock to keep the Redhawks ahead by two.
Following Stone’s bucket, Cosey took the ball just over mid-court before throwing up the winning shot. After an official review of Cosey’s shot, 0.4 seconds were put on the clock. However, Southeast Missouri never got a shot off on its final possession.
Eastern Kentucky led by as many as 14 in the first half, 34-20, only to see Southeast Missouri storm back in the early stages of the second stanza.
SEMO’s defense held the Colonels without a field goal for nearly seven minutes on the way to building a six-point advantage, 55-49. The Redhawks eventually stretched the lead to 11 points, 63-52, following a Paul McRoberts lay-up.
Cosey and junior Corey Walden each posted a team-high 20 points.
For Southeast Missouri, Jarekious Bradley piled up a career-high 32 points, but did not score the final 11:19 of the contest.
With the win, Eastern has now won 10 straight regular season games over SEMO.
The Colonels will play their final regular season non-conference game on Tuesday against Chattanooga. Tip-off at McBrayer Arena is scheduled for 7 p.m.
EKU entered the game fourth in the nation in steals (203) and seventh with an average of 9.2 per game. The Colonels had nine steals on Saturday against Southeast Missouri.
In two games against Southeast last season, Eric Stutz averaged 17 points and 10.5 rebounds while shooting 63 percent from the field. Stutz finished with six points and two rebounds in 19 minutes.
Eastern Kentucky is 25-2 in its last 27 home games.
Southeast Missouri entered the game second in the OVC in rebound margin (+4.0) while the Colonels are last (-6.0). Eastern out-rebounded the Redhawks by one.
Eastern has the third-best turnover margin in the nation (+6.7), but finished with only two fewer turnovers than Southeast tonight.
Southeast Missouri entered the game leading the OVC in scoring (82.9 ppg) and 11th among 12 teams in scoring defense (77.8 ppg).
The Redhawks entered the game second in the OVC in shooting (49.1 percent). Southeast shot 56 percent on Saturday.