RICHMOND, Va. -- Richmond (21-13) treated its home fans to yet another thrilling victory in the Robins Center, defeating Arizona State (18-16), 76-70 in overtime in the NIT Second Round.
The win earned the Spiders a date in the NIT Quarterfinal round against Miami on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. in the Robins Center. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN. It marks the second time that Richmond has advanced to the final eight of the NIT, playing Syracuse at home back in 2002.
“I thought it was a great game and great atmosphere,” head coach Chris Mooney said. “We think very highly of Arizona State. There were some times when we could have given in and we certainly didn’t. We fought hard to stay with them and we stayed together as a team. We showed a lot of grit tonight.”
Senior Kendall Anthony came up big with a game-high 21 points, including three treys and sixth free throws. Anthony hit a three and was fouled, converting a four-point play to put the Spiders up four in overtime.
Terry Allen came on in the second half and overtime, scoring all of his 17 points and going 5-of-9 from the field in those periods. He converted his sixth double-double of the season with 17 points and 10 rebounds.
T.J. Cline tallied 19 points with four assists and ShawnDre’ Jones scored 15 points off the bench on 6-of-7 shooting from the field. Many of Jones’ baskets came on floaters in the lane, including a clutch one from the baseline in overtime.
Richmond shot 47.4 percent from the floor and forced 15 turnovers, converting them into 16 points.
The Spiders used gritty defensive play in clutch situations at the end of the game to overcome Arizona State’s 46-30 advantage on the glass. Shaquielle McKissic scored 18 points and had 11 boards, while Savon Goodman scored 14 with 17 rebounds for the Sun Devils.
UR built a 14-4 lead in the first half off of outstanding half-court defense, but the Sun Devils slowly found offensive confidence and eventually took a 28-27 lead with 2:12 left in the first half. Cline finished the half with consecutive post-up layups and then came open on a baseline inbounds play with three seconds remaining. His free throw gave Richmond a 32-31 halftime advantage.
UR is now 19-3 when leading or tied at the half.
The second half saw the Sun Devils build a small lead that Richmond was never able to overcome. The Spiders cut the margin to one possession on several occasions, but could not tie the game until Cline grabbed a defensive rebound and was fouled with 1:05 left. He the first free throw to tie the game at 60.
Richmond’s Deion Taylor came up with a big block, but Anthony couldn’t convert on a fast break opportunity with 30 seconds left. Arizona State’s final shot went wide and the game went to overtime.
McKissic scored the first points of OT, but Allen answered with a big three for the Spiders. Anthony added an elbow jumper to put Richmond up three, but ASU answered with their own three to tie it. After an empty UR possession, the Spider defense forced a shot clock violation to get the ball back with under two minutes left.
Anthony unloaded a three-pointer from the top of the key and was fouled on the release. A cacophony of cheers exploded as the ball ripped the nets with the referee’s whistle for a foul. ASU continued to answer Richmond with baskets, but free throws from Anthony and Allen late secured the 76-70 victory.
The win was the 16th home victory for the Spiders, setting a new program record for most home wins in a single season.