Site: Charlotte, N.C. (Bojangles Coliseum)
Score: High Point 84, Hampton 77
Records: High Point 13-17 (7-9), Hampton 9-18 (5-11)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The High Point University Men’s Basketball team defeated Hampton 84-77 in the Big South First Round in an overtime thriller. Zack Austin led the way for HPU with an astounding 24 points, 16 rebounds, and zero turnovers. HPU had five players in double digits, joining Austin were Jaden House (19), Alex Holt (13), John-Michael Wright (13), and Bryant Randleman (10).
Coach GG Smith: I am very happy with the win, we have played a lot of overtime games this year and I thought our experiences in overtime situations really helped us tonight. I have to give Hampton a lot of credit we handled them pretty well the other day and they came back and we knew they would be a different team. They played extremely hard and Deuce Dean played well he does a great job of creating fouls and creating contact. We could not get him off the line. Overall proud of the effort from our guys, they played extremely hard. They made their run but our guys weathered the storm and played well down the stretch.
A free throw and a deep Austin three-pointer put HPU up 4-0 early with 18:12 to go in the first.
Brock Williams made a steal and laid it in on the other end to tie the game at 7 with 13:30 left to play in the first.
Hampton led by as many as 10 with 10:48 left to play in the first half.
An Austin put-back and a House three-pointer with 8:40 remaining in the first half made it a 19-14 game.
Austin slammed back a three attempt by JMW to bring the Pirate lead down to six.
Wright hit a mid-range jumper to again make it a six-point game, 27-21 with less than six minutes remaining in the first half.
Holt scored and was fouled with 4:20 left in the first half, he completed the three-point play to tie the game at 27.
House nailed a three give HPU the lead, 30-27 with 3:42 left to play in the first half.
A Holt two-handed jam put the Panthers up 32-27.
Austin hit a three to put HPU up 35-27 with 2:22 remaining in the first half. HPU ended the first half with a 20-1 run and took a 39-28 lead into the break at halftime.
Hampton cut the lead to 40-34 in the first three minutes of the second half, but JMW hit a three-off a Hampton turnover that put HPU up 43-34 with 16:46 to play.
With less than 14 to go, Hampton had cut the Panther lead to two, Randleman found Holt who put it in off a lob to give HPU a 48-44 lead.
With 11:39 left in the game House hit a three for 16 points and a 53-46 lead.
The Panthers needed a basket and Austin drove down and put HPU up four with 8:45 to play.
With five minutes to play, HPU only had a one-point lead. House scored to give his Panthers a three-point advantage, 63-60.
A Holt three-point play gave HPU a 68-66 lead with 2:31 remaining.
Austin exploded to the rim and slammed back a missed three-point attempt to put High Point up 70-67.
Hampton forced overtime, and the two sides played for five extra minutes inside Bojangles Coliseum tied at 71.
Emmanuel Izunabor started OT for High Point with a made basket that gave High Point an early 73-71 lead in overtime.
Randleman put High Point up 75-72 with 3:32 remaining on a hard drive.
It was Austin’s night as he hit two more threes in overtime to help HPU pull away for Hampton. Austin’s second three put the Panthers up 81-75 with 1:24 left in OT.
It’s HPU’s second straight season with a Big South First Round win.
HPU is back in action on Friday at 6:00 PM in the Big South Quarterfinals against #2 Winthrop inside Bojangles Coliseum.