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West Virginia Vs. Providence: Bryant Beats Friars With Big Three In OT, 87-84

Desperate not to lose four in a row, the Mountaineers battled the Friars into overtime before Truck Bryant buried a deep three from the top of the key to give the Mountaineers an 87-84 victory. A gritty display by the Mountaineers found them stealing a victory in a game that saw 7 ties and 8 lead changes before it was finally decided.

Deniz Kilicli gave the Mountaineers and 84-83 lead late in the overtime, and the 'Eers had a chance to extend after a Providence turnover. Unfortunately, Kevin Jones got bottled up inside and missed a short put back. Providence took over with 23.3 seconds remaining, Gerard Coleman took the ball to the basket, but was fouled on the put-back attempt. Coleman would only hit one of his free throws, giving Bryant the chance to be a hero in a tied game.

The Mountaineers started the second half by removing Jabarie Hinds and Keaton Miles from the starting lineup, and replacing them with Aaron Brown and Gary Browne. It was Truck Bryant, however, who started the half off for the Mountaineers, scoring 13 of the team's first 15 points of the half. Bryant would finish with 32 points on 11-of-22 shooting, including 5 threes, none bigger than the game winner.

Hotly contested down the stretch, the Mountaineers tied the game for the first time in a seemingly forever on an awkward Deniz Kilicli power move with 90 seconds left. Providence would answer to take at 74-72 lead on a putback by Gerard Coleman.

Kevin Jones missed a three on the ensuing Mountaineer possession, and West Virginia was forced to foul. Vincent Council hit one of his two free throws, giving the Mountaineers a chance to tie the game with 26.6 seconds left to play. Bryant missed a long two, but Jones put it back to cut Providence's lead to one, 75-74. The Mountaineers put Coleman back on the line and he made one of two. The 'Eers pushed the ball up the court and Bryant tied the game on a coast to coast lay-up with four seconds left. Council missed a three pointer at the buzzer and the game went to overtime.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.