MOORHEAD, Minn. (1/6/16) --- It took more than 40 minutes to decide the outcome for Carleton and Concordia on Wednesday night.
The Cobbers rallied furiously at the end of regulation by scoring seven points in the final 30 seconds to send the game to overtime but the Knights flipped the switch in overtime and came away with an 87-86 victory.
The overtime loss marked the second time in four games that the Cobbers have dropped an overtime decision against a school from Northfield.
Carleton improves to 7-3 overall and 4-1 in MIAC play while Concordia drops below .500 at 5-6 and is now 2-4 in conference play.
Austin Nelson got the scoring started for the Cobbers by drilling a wing triple that made it 3-2.
There was a clear mismatch early on inside for CC with Carleton's Kevin Grow. The 6-8 sophomore answered the Syverson-Bolger tandem by scoring eight of his team's first 14 points. The Centennial (Minn.) product finished with a career-high 28 points on 13-of-14 shooting from the floor.
Concordia went on an 8-0 run of it's own that featured a pair of Tom Fraase driving layups which made it 19-14 with 8:43 to play in the half.
Peter Bakker-Arkema hit a 3-pointer and Tianen Chen converted an old-fashioned 3-point play to tie the game 21-21.
Minutes later Nelson converted his own 3-point play to make it 29-26. Dylan Alderman hit a pair from the free throw line to make it 31-29 at the intermission.
Grow came out of the break on a mission for Carleton. The lanky center went on a 6-0 run with a pair of hook shots and a reverse layup.
Nelson provided the answer with a wing deep ball and a transition layup that made it 38-35.
The Cobbers built their lead to seven points, their largest of the game, with 16:44 left in the second half off of an Anderson layup.
Chen responded for the Knights by making four free throws on a pair of trips to the charity stripe followed by a pair of hoops from Grow that pushed Carleton ahead 54-53, their first lead since the clock read 11:33 in the first half.
The next six minutes would feature four ties, four lead changes, and a wild final 30 seconds.
Alderman tied the game 61-61 with just under five minutes to play. Neither team would score for the next 2:21 until Alderman made another trip to the line, hitting both again that gave Concordia a 63-61 lead with 2:30 to play.
Chen then proceeded to take over for the Knights. Carleton went on a 9-0 run in which he scored seven points, making three trips to the foul line. Chen was a load on the block, as he would up shooting 19 free throws, connecting on 13 of them en route to tallying 27 points. He was especially effective in the second half, shooting 17 foul attempts and racking up 15 points in the period alone.
The Cobbers would be forced to play the fouling game for the final 30 seconds. Fraase connected on a triple off a dribble handoff that made it 70-66 with 22 seconds remaining.
A Knight hit the first but missed the back end of the bonus and Concordia rushed down the court where Alderman wiggled loose and buried a 3-pointer from the same spot as Fraase making it 71-69.
The Cobbers chose to foul Chen, who then missed both double bonus attempts. With no timeouts, Alderman hauled down the rebound and was fouled on his footrace down the floor.
Carleton head coach Guy Kalland opted to ice Alderman by calling timeout, but the steady signal caller hit both free throws to complete the Cobber rally and send the game to overtime.
Chen scored the first two buckets of the intermission before Anderson hit a pair of foul shots and Fraase canned a trifecta that gave Concordia it's only lead of the overtime.
Grow scored inside and Mitchell Biewen hit two free throws that put the Knights ahead for good. Chen would score five more points down the stretch that gave the Knights an eight point lead with 16 seconds to play, their largest of the game, that proved important in staving off the Cobber rally as Alderman scored quickly and Nelson hit a three off a steal as time expired.
The Knights outshot Concordia 59.6% (28-of-47) compared to the Cobbers 49.2% (29-of-59). Carleton went 45% (9-of-20) from the floor in the first half but torched the nets following the intermission, shooting 68.4% (13-of-19).
The Cobbers connected on 7-of-17 tries from beyond the arc while Carleton only went 3-of-8, but the difference came from the 15-foot line. The Knights made more free throws than Concordia attempted, going 28-for-45 from the charity striple while the Cobbers went 21-for-26.
Both teams did a majority of their damage in the paint. The two teams combined for 94 points in the paint (Concordia – 44, Carleton – 50), which was 54.3% of the game's points.
Bench production also proved a factor in the outcome. The Knights benched pumped in 33 points compared to the Cobbers 11 points.
He's not quite Mr. 1000 but Jordan Bolger continues to inch closer. Bolger recorded 23 points on 10-for-16 shooting from the floor bringing his career total to 990 points. He has now scored 20 or more points in four consecutive contests and in 7-of-9 games this season.
ICE IN HIS VEINS
Dylan Alderman poured in a career-high 18 points on 3-of-5 shooting. The Fargo native went 11-of-12 from the charity stripe. He hit some clutch foul shots down the stretch that forced the game to overtime.
IT'S A TEAM GAME
The Cobbers had four of five starters reach double figures. Fraase, Bolger, Alderman and Nelson accounting for 69 of the team's 86 points. Those four players have combined for 64.2% of the team's scoring this season.
Things don't get any easier for the Cobbers. They will continue their 3-game home stand on Saturday when the host St. John's at 3 p.m. The Johnnies are coming off an 81-56 win against Macalester and stand at 10-1 overall and 5-1 in the MIAC. 10-1 start is the best since 1990 for the Johnnies when they got off to an 11-1 start.