Kerem Kanter’s jump hook from 10 feet out with 4.5 seconds left in overtime lifted Green Bay to a 94-92 win over SIUE in nonconference men’s basketball Monday at the Resch Center.
SIUE has now lost five in a row and is 4-8 overall. Green Bay snapped a two-game losing streak and is 5-6 overall.
“I can live with this one,” SIUE Head Coach Jon Harris said. “You never accept losing and I feel bad for the guys. They put together a full game with that effort and they don’t get rewarded.”
Justin Benton drove the length of the floor and launched a three-point attempt from the left wing, but his shot in the rim and bounced out.
A Keenan Simmons dunk with 58 seconds left in overtime gave the Cougars a 92-89 lead. Khalil Small tied the game with a jumper and a free throw after a foul with 51 seconds left. SIUE turned the ball over with 24 seconds left, allowing Green Bay the chance at the final shot.
The Cougars erased a four-point Green Bay lead in the final two minutes of regulation and a Simmons layup with seven seconds left tied the score at 82. Green Bay missed several attempts in the closing seconds of regulation.
SIUE led 36-35 at half, lost for the first time this season when leading at half. The Cougars’ largest lead was six which they held twice, once in the first half and again with 5:40 to play in the second half after a Jalen Henry layup made it 69-63.
Green Bay’s largest lead came with 15:45 to play in the second when Trevor Anderson made it 49-44 with a three-pointer.
The game featured 21 lead changes and 16 ties.
Five players scored in double figures for the Cougars led by Carlos Anderson’s career-high 26 points. Henry scored 17 points. Burak Eslik added 16 points and Christian Ellis and Justin Benton each scored 11 points. The 11 points are a career-high for Benton.
“Again it is a credit to our guys and a credit to our group,” Harris said. “We have a lot of guys that can do a lot of things. That’s the first time that we’ve done it in a while.”
It was the first time the Cougars have had at least five guys score in double figures since the win at Grand Canyon Nov. 28.
Following several games of subpar shooting, the Cougars bounced back to shoot a season-best 50.7 percent (34-67) from the field.
Simmons scored seven points and led SIUE with 10 rebounds. The Cougars outrebounded Green Bay 43-34.
“If we can bottle up this effort and this level of focus and intensity on both ends, we’ll be able to put something together before the season’s over,” Harris said.
Trevor Anderson led Green Bay with 23 points. Kanter added 17 points. Jamar Hurdle scored 16 points and Small scored 15.
SIUE continues its three-game road trip with a Wednesday matchup at Marquette. The game is at 7:30 p.m. and will be televised on Fox Sports 1.
“This one is going to hurt a little bit,” Harris added. “We have to find a way to move past it as quickly as we can and be able to execute a game plan on Wednesday.”