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In first game after 16-day pause, William & Mary men's hoops wins thriller

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Posted at 12:20 AM, Dec 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-15 00:20:12-05

WASHINGTON, DC (TribeAthletics.com) – Senior Luke Loewe scored on a tough driving lay-up with 12.3 seconds left to lift William & Mary men's basketball to a miraculous come-from-behind victory, 85-84, in overtime at George Washington on Monday night.

Loewe and freshman running mate Yuri Covington led the Tribe (1-1) charge, combining for 31 of the team's final 44 points, including eight its 10 points in overtime. Loewe led all scorers with 24 points, including 17 in the final 25 minutes, to go with five rebounds, while Covington tallied 16 points and shared team-high assist honors with four. After starting the game just 1-of-9 from the floor, Covington came up big down the stretch, hitting six of his final seven shots. He scored the Tribe's final four points of regulation and its first four in overtime.

Facing its former Southern Conference rival, W&M picked up its first win over George Washington in D.C. since 1967.

The Tribe trailed by as much as 19 points in the first half but erased much of that thanks to a 15-0 run. Defensively, W&M held the Colonials (1-5) scoreless for eight minutes and without a field goal for nine, cutting a 51-33 deficit with 18:39 left to a 51-48 with 11:27 left. The Tribe took its first lead of the final 20 minutes on a Loewe old-fashion 3-point play with 6:43 left.

Neither team led by more than three points over the final eight minutes of regulation and all five in extra time. The Tribe held a 75-72 advantage with 52 seconds left following back-to-back Covington lay-ups. GW scored the final three points of regulation at the free throw line, including Sloan Seymour's 2-of-3 at the line with just nine seconds remaining to force OT.

The teams traded the lead in overtime, and a Matthew Moyer tip-in gave the Colonials their final lead, 84-83, with 25 ticks left. On the ensuing Tribe possession, Loewe drove the right side of the lane and was closely guarded by 6-5 GW guard Maceo Jack. The Fond du Lac, Wis., native hung in the air and finished over the top of Jack with a kiss of the glass.

Following a 16-day lay-off after pausing the program due to COVID issues, the Tribe started fast, scoring the game's first five points, but George Washington led for the majority of the first 20 minutes. The Colonials opened up as much as a 19-point lead with less than a minute remaining in the first half. James Bishop, who led GW with 21 points, scored seven-straight to cap an 11-0 run and gave the home team a 46-27 lead in the later stages of the first 20 minutes.

For the second-straight game to start the year, the Tribe shot better than 50% from the field at 50.8% (33-of-65), including 59.3% (16-of-27) in the second half. W&M connected on 15-of-17 (88.2%) at the free throw line. Impressively, the Green and Gold held a 56-42 advantage on points in the paint.

In the second-half comeback, W&M limited GW to 38.9% (7-of-18) from the field and forced the Colonials into 11 turnovers. George Washington finished the game at 48.4% (30-of-62) shooting and 19-of-23 (82.6%) at the charity stripe.

Junior Quinn Blair tallied 13 points and added five rebounds for the Tribe, while redshirt freshman Ben Wight scored a career-high 10 points and added four rebounds. Junior Mehkel Harvey turned in another strong showing with eight points, three rebounds and a career-high five blocked shots.

Up Next

The Tribe returns to action at Hampton on Wednesday night. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. from the HU Convocation Center. The game will be televised regionally in Hampton Roads on WSKY TV 4 and online via ESPN+.

Tribe fans can catch the men's basketball action over the Tribe Sports Network with Jay Colley on the call. Locally in Williamsburg, fans can listen in on The Tide 92.3 FM and the audio is also available over the Web via the Tune-In app.