(Notre Dame, Ind.) A three-point shot from Judson guard Luke Pearson with 1.1 second left in regulation sent the Saints into their first overtime period of the young 2012-2013 season. Tied at 61, the Saints used a dominating overtime period, where they outscored Judson 29-14, to cruise to their sixth win of the season.
The Saints found themselves trailing the Eagles by as many as seven points late in the first half. With the first half coming to a close, a layup from Darrell McIntyre (Indianapolis, Ind.) cut to the Eagles lead to four points.
Judson went into halftime with a 30-26 advantage.
The Saints were able to keep it close in the first half due to their effectiveness of converting off of mistakes from the Eagles. Despite only shooting 38.7% from the field, the Saints turned 9 Judson turnovers into 11 points.
A layup from Saints forward Brandon Evans (Grand Rapids, Mich.) gave the Saints a 34-32 lead with 16:12 left in the second half: their first lead since the 16:09 mark of the first half.
Trailing by four with 13:56 left in the half, the Saints went on an 11-0 run highlighted by five straight points from point guard Mike Vander Ploeg (Kalamazoo, Mich.) and a deep three-point shot from Zoe Bauer (Culver, Ind.) to take a 45-38 lead, their largest lead in the second half.
Judson, however, was able to come back from the seven point Saints lead, and eventually take a two point lead with 5:42 remaining the game. The Saints rebounded from the Judson run and found themselves leading 60-56 with just 32 seconds remaining in the game.
Missed free-throws from the Saints gave Judson the ball down by three with just over 4 seconds left in the game. An off-balanced deep three-point shot attempt was banked in from Judson guard Luke Pearson which tied the game at 61 with just 1.1 seconds left in the game. The Saints were unable to a shot up as the clock ran out, and we were headed to our first overtime period of the 2012-2013 season.
The Saints took full advantage of the five minute overtime period which was started off with a quick basket from Zoe Bauer three seconds into it.
A tip-in from Clayton Webb (Dallas, Tex.) followed by two free-throws from Mike Vander Ploeg, gave the Saints six point lead with 3:32 left in the overtime period.
After two free-throws from Judson's Bob McCarthy cut the Saints lead to four, a layup from Brandon Evans once again extended the Saints lead to six points.
With both teams already in the double bonus from the second half, free-throw shooting was crucial down the stretch.
A missed free-throw from Turner Schwarz turned into a jumper from Mike Vander Ploeg gave the Saints a seven point lead and the confidence that they were going to finish off this game.
Missed shots and turnovers forced Judson to foul late in the period and put the Saints on the free-throw line where they were able to convert 16-17 in the overtime period.
Yama Kader (Mission Viejo, Cali.) celebrated his birthday by scoring the final four points of the game giving the Saints a 90-75 victory.
Mike Vander Ploeg scored a career high 20 points in the game including going 8-9 from the charity stripe. All 20 points came in the second half and overtime. Vander Ploeg also recorded a team high 4 assists.
Brandon Evans finished with a game high 21 points and 15 rebounds on 8-16 from the field.
Parker Dominguez (Santa Clarita, Cali.) finished with 8 points and a game high 16 rebounds.
"I was very impressed with how we came out in the second half," said coach Bob Schermerhorn. "We missed some shots early on, but the guys fought throughout the final 25 minutes. I thought Mike was excellent out there running the floor and knocking down shots. Our bigs once again were dominant on the glass, and I felt everyone contributed to this win."
The win for the Saints brings their season total to 6-5 (4-4 CCAC). They will return to the court on Monday, December 10th at McKenna Arena to take on the Crusaders of Great Lakes Christian College. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m.