Jordan's Buzzer-Beater Lifts Tulsa Over UAB, 75-74
Jan. 28, 2009
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TULSA, Okla. (AP) - Jerome Jordan matched a career-high with 25 points, the most important a four-footer in the lane at the buzzer, lifting Tulsa to a 75-74 victory over UAB Wednesday.
Robert Vaden had put UAB ahead 74-73 by making one of two free throws with 14 seconds remaining. Tulsa called timeout with 3.4 seconds left. Ray Reese inbounded to the 7-foot Jordan just outside the paint, where he spun around Howard Crawford and put up the shot, which bounced on the rim before falling through.
It was a huge lift for Tulsa, 4-2 in Conference USA and 14-7 overall, which was staring its third one-point conference loss in the face.
For UAB, 3-3 and 13-8, it was equally as disappointing, as the Blazers had led since the early minutes and wasted an 11-point second-half advantage.
UAB coach Mike Davis was perturbed by a no-call on what he thought was a goal-tend by Jordan on a shot by Crawford with 21 seconds left. The Blazers did wind up with their leading scorer in Vaden at the free throw line, but his miss gave Tulsa the opportunity to win in regulation.
Jordan finished with six rebounds, three assists and four blocks for Tulsa. Justin Hurtt added 11 points and Ben Uzoh and Bishop Wheatley each added 10. Wheatley went end to end for a layup that tied the score at 73, while Uzoh scored all of his points in the final 10 minutes. Paul Delaney scored 21 points on 9-of-11 shooting to lead UAB. Vaden and Crawford each scored 14 and Lawrence Kinnard added 12.
The Blazers kept the league's leading defensive and rebounding team off balance all night, shooting 52.5 percent and outrebounding Tulsa 31-23. Tulsa responded with one of its best shooting nights, making 59.6 percent (31-52). Jordan dropped in 11 of 13 field goals.
"He's just got incredible touch," said Tulsa coach Doug Wojcik. "And he was really determined to go up strong and get off a good shot. His eyes were so wide as he went up, it was unbelievable."
"Jordan's a great player and he made a great play at the end," Davis said. "I thought it was a goaltend on the play before. Still, if we make the two free throws, they're not in a position to win the game."
UAB led 40-36 at halftime and expanded the lead to 49-38 early in the second half. Tulsa clawed back into the game, but didn't forge its first tie until a hook by Jordan knotted the game at 71 with 1:26 to play.
"You could hear the crowd calling for defense, and we're normally a good defensive team," Wojcik said. "But give UAB credit, they're a good team and had a great game plan for us. Delaney is a very good player and they really executed the high pick-and-roll well. They've got good shooters on the wings and they can spread you out."
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