Just in Time: Men's Hoops Snatch Dramatic Win Over Saints

Just in Time: Men's Hoops Snatch Dramatic Win Over Saints
Justin McCoy hit two clutch shots to send the Bucs to a thrilling 69-67 overtime win over St. Martin's. Photo by Joel Auerbach

BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Justin McCoy and the Buccaneers got an early Christmas present.

McCoy, Barry's 5-10 senior guard, hit two big-time three-point shots, the second a bank shot off the glass at the overtime buzzer to give the Bucs a 69-67 win over St. Martin's in the Lynn Courtyard by Marriott Holiday Classic Wednesday.

"Santa was good to me," McCoy said. "I just threw it up. I couldn't have done it without my teammates."

After St. Martin's Brady Bomber sank the second of two free throws to give the Saints a one-point lead, McCoy raced up the far sideline with three seconds left and got a dramatic three to fall for the gamewinner.

At the end of regulation, with Barry trailing by three, McCoy hit a triple in front of the Bucs' bench with 0.5 seconds left to send the game into overtime.

"That speaks to the talent Justin is," Barry assistant coach Ryan Saunders said. "That was a game we should've lost twice. But our guys kept fighting, and it feels good to get two wins against quality teams."

The Buccaneers (5-3) fought an up-hill battle the entire way, finding themselves behind 14 less than two minutes into the second half. Barry was outsized, and gave up 23 second-chance points while scoring 10 of their own on the extra possession.

McCoy hit a jumper with 4:18 to play to pull the Bucs within five. After St. Martin's 6-foot-11 center Matt Dodson tipped in a shot to put the Saints (4-6) up seven, Barry forward Filip Toric tipped in one of his own to keep the Buccaneers within five.

Chad Renfro's running layup with 1:23 left in regulation pulled Barry within three. Bryan Van Cott knocked down a jumper to get the Bucs within one with 31 seconds left. Saint Martin's sandwiched four free throws around a lay-in by Toric to take a three-point lead with eight seconds to go.

That set up McCoy's first clutch three.

In overtime, Barry jumped out to a four-point lead when Damien Dwaine scored down low while being defended by Dodson, and Magne Fivelstad, making his Bucs' debut, sank two free throws at the 2:53 mark. Rei Jensen answered for St. Martin's to cut it to two, and Bomber's three put the Saints up one with 18 seconds left.

McCoy sank one of two free throws with nine seconds left to tie the game at 66-66. Bomber sank the last of two free throws with four seconds remaining to push St. Martin's back ahead by one.

But McCoy hit the gamewinner, sending Barry into a 14-day layoff with two wins in Boca Raton.

McCoy finished with 13 points and three assists. Toric had 17 points, eight rebounds, three assists and a block. Renfro scored 11 of his 12 points in the second half, and pulled down six rebounds. Fivelstad had eight points, six boards and a block. Aaron Martin scored eight, and Van Cott seven.

Barry shot 45.6 percent from the floor, while St. Martin's hit 40 percent of its shots. The Bucs were 8 of 21 from three-point range for 38.1 percent. St. Martin's hit 4 of 12 for 33.3 percent.

The Bucs, who host Florida Tech 4 p.m. Jan. 2 to begin Sunshine State Conference play, have played three straight games that were decided by four points or less, including two overtime contests.

"These close games are preparing us for conference," Saunders said. "It shows how much we value each possession. If games go down to the wire, we'll at least have some experience and know what to expect. That's two games in a row we've had to fight to get back into the game. It shows a lot about our guys' resiliency."