Ray'Sean TaylorYOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Ray'Sean Taylor's 35-foot three-pointer as time expired vaulted SIUE men's basketball to a 69-66 win over host Youngstown State on Saturday afternoon at the J. Arnold Wealth Management Company Tournament.

Subscribe Now to Breaking News

The shot completed a comeback for SIUE, which trailed by eight at halftime and by two with less than a minute to play.

The Cougars picked up their second win of the year, improving to 2-3. Youngstown State dropped to 2-2.

With two seconds left and possession out of bounds on the sideline, Courtney Carter inbounded the ball to Taylor, who mishandled the ball initially. He picked it up and heaved it to the rim, knocking it through as time expired.

"We just battled," SIUE Head Coach Brian Barone said. "I have said it for weeks. I believe in this team! How about that game? How about this team battling the way they battled and overcoming obstacles throughout the game?"

The Penguins led 66-64 following a Taylor jumper with 37 seconds left. Lamar Wright blocked a shot with 10 seconds left and Shamar Wright grabbed the loose ball, found Courtney Carter on the break. Carter dished to Shaun Doss, Jr. who hit the running layup to tie the score with five seconds left. The Penguins turned the ball over on a tip into the backcourt on the ensuing inbounds play to give it back to SIUE.

"We get the stop and you have to decide do you foul or not foul," Barone explained. "Our guys said, 'no we'll get a stop.' Then we get a steal and a layup."
Trailing 39-31 to start the second half, SIUE employed much more pressure in the second half, and forced 13 turnovers in the period, leading to 15 points. For the game, the Cougars scored 21 points off 18 YSU giveaways.

"It is so cool when you see teams start to believe in what they're doing within the game," Barone said.

Article continues after sponsor message

Top Story: Silvey, Garner Score 13, Harris Hits For 12, Key Free Throws, Big Block At The End Helps Give Edwardsville 49-47 Win Over Rival Panthers

Taylor tied his career high with 24 points. He knocked down eight of 17 shots from the field and was 6 for 8 from three-point range, becoming the first SIUE plyer with at least five threes in a game since the 2017-18 season. He grabbed seven rebounds and added four assists.

"He told me the other day, 'I'm not a freshman,'" Barone said.

Doss scored a season-high 19 points to reach the 900-point plateau in his college career including his time at Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

"That is huge," Barone said. "Because of the sacrifices that young man has made to be part of a team."

SIUE connected on a season-best 48 percent (23-48) of its shots. The Cougars hit a season-high nine three-pointers and were 47 percent (9-19) from long range.

Youngstown was an identical 23-48 from the field. The Penguins were 5 for 17 from three-point range. Michael Akuchie had 14 points to lead three YSU players in double figures.

SIUE will conclude its time at the tournament with a Sunday matchup with St. Thomas. Tipoff is scheduled for 12 p.m. CT Sunday.

"Our guys deserve it," Barone said. "A lot of teams work hard and a lot of teams deserve it right now. I am happy about our guys and I am really proud of them."

"Pat Benatar - Heartbreaker" now playing on The Eagle, the Riverbend's only Classic Rock station. Check out Riverbender Radio Today and Listen to Win!

 

Send your news tips to [email protected] or on twitter @EdGlenTodayNews

Print Version