San Diego, Calif.—For the first 32 minutes of the game, the San Diego Christian College men's basketball team struggled to get going offensively and had difficulty shutting down the Point Loma Nazarene offensive attack. Fortunately for the Hawks, regulation is 40 minutes.
Trailing by 51- 32 with 8:24 left in the game, SDCC finished the rest of regulation on a 26-7 run to send the game into overtime, then outscored the Sea Lions 10-5 in overtime to stun former GSAC foe PLNU and capture a key victory over the crosstown rival.
SDCC moves to 3-3 with the win. PLNU, in their first season at the NCAA Division II level, falls to 2-3 with the loss.
The Hawks struggled in the first half, falling behind quickly. SDCC stayed close much of the first half, until an 11-1 Sea Lion run over the final 6:12 of the first half pushed the PLNU lead to 34-20 at halftime.
The Sea Lions dominated the paint in the first half, outscoring the Hawks 18-4 down low. In addition, PLNU converted SDCC miscues, turning 10 Hawk turnovers into 16 points.
The second half continued the way the first ended, with PLNU continuing to stretch out their lead. The Sea Lions' largest lead was 37-27 with 13:05 on the clock.
When PLNU's Todd Campbell scored with 8:24 left in regulation, the PLNU lead moved to 51-32.
The Hawks then started to chip away at the PLNU lead, scoring on seven consecutive possessions, making it a 56-49 game and taking the Sea Lions' to single digits for the first time since the first half.
The Hawks then benefited from PLNU's inability to convert from the free throw line. After the Sea Lions missed the front end of a one-and-one, SDCC's Derrick Thompson converted a layup to cut the lead to 56-51.
After forcing a turnover, Thompson again worked his way into the lane for a layup to make it a one possession game at 56-53 with 1:05 left on the clock.
On the ensuing possession, PLNU missed another front end of a one-and-one, giving SDCC the ball back. The Hawks could not convert, forcing SDCC to foul once again. The Sea Lions once again missed a front end of a one-and-one, and SDCC attacked the basket as Kwaminique Brandon's layup cut the lead to 56-55 with :14 left on the clock.
The Hawks fouled on the inbound, sending PLNU's Todd Campbell to the free throw line. Campbell converted both free throws to put the Sea Lions up 58-55 with :12 remaining.
On the next possession, SDCC's Andy Saharan received a pass from Thompson, and drilled a three pointer to tie the game for the first time at 58-58 with only :06 left in regulation.
PLNU's final shot in regulation by Campbell fell short and the game headed to overtime.
After a defensive stop, SDCC took the lead for the first time in the game at 61-58 on an old fashioned three point play by Brandon. SDCC then forced a turnover, and Thompson knocked down a jumper to put SDCC up 63-58.
PLNU was able to cut the SDCC lead to 64-63 with 1:21 left in overtime, but SDCC's defense continue to shut down the Sea Lions and Brandon converted four free throws in the final :19 of the game to give the Hawks the 68-63 win.
From the final 8:24 in regulation and through overtime, SDCC outscored PLNU 36-12.
The Hawks were led by Kevin Dawson, with 15 points on 6-10 shooting. Brandon added 14 points, including seven in overtime. Thompson chipped in 12 , and Saharen had 11.
The Hawks shot 47.2% from the field for the game, including 53.3% (16-30) in the second half. SDCC limited PLNU to 39.3% shooting for the game and limited the Sea Lions to 31.3% shooting in the second half and overtime.
SDCC now hits the road for a stretch of exhibitions against NCAA Division I teams. The first matchup is against Southern Utah on Saturday, December 1.