The Penguins couldn't hold a late lead against Butler.
By PETE MOLLICA
VINDICATOR SPORTS STAFF
YOUNGSTOWN -- Butler's Bruce Horan didn't score until the final three seconds of regulation, but his three 3-point goals broke the backs of Youngstown State, as the Bulldogs escaped Beeghly Center with a 67-66 overtime victory Wednesday night.
Horan, a 6-foot-3 sophomore guard, made his first 3-point shot with 2.3 seconds remaining in regulation, tying the score at 56.
He sank two more long shots, the second coming with 10.7 seconds remaining, to provide Butler (7-9, 3-4 Horizon League) with the winning points.
"It was a great game and I'm proud of my kids. They played well," said YSU (4-12, 1-6) coach John Robic. "We defended well and they rebounded their tails off tonight.
"We made some big plays. I wish we could have made just one more."
Senior Adam Baumann led three Penguins in double figures with 18 points, including an 8-of-11 performance at the free throw line. Junior Doug Underwood was 10-for-10 at the line to finish with 12 points, while sophomore Andy Jahnke was 3-for-3 from 3-point range and had 11 points.
Baumann had a double-double, pulling down 11 rebounds, as YSU controlled the boards, 39-26.
"Adam always plays well against Butler," said Robic.
"We just couldn't control [Duane] Lightfoot. He was the real difference tonight," he added.
Lightfoot finished as the game's top scorer with 25 points, including 14 in the second half, while Avery Sheets added 17 for the Bulldogs.
The score was tied 16 times and there were 16 lead changes. YSU led by as many as seven points with 7:25 remaining in the game, 47-40.
But the Penguins went scoreless over the next three minutes and the Bulldogs tied the score at 47 with 4:29 remaining.
Junior Khari McQueen made a three-point play and YSU extended its lead to five points, 54-49, with 2:53 remaining on two free throws by TeJay Anderson.
Butler then got baskets by Lightfoot and Sheets to pull to 54-53 with 1:07 remaining.
Underwood sank two free throws with 13.5 seconds remaining to give the Penguins a three-point margin, 56-53.
Following a Butler timeout, the Bulldogs set up Horan for his first 3-pointer.
In overtime, Horan made his second 3-pointer with 4:30 remaining, but two free throws by Anderson and two more by Underwood gave YSU a 60-59 lead with 3:36 to play.
Lightfoot scored with 3:15 to go, but Baumann put the Penguins back on top with two free throws at the 3:05 mark.
Sheets scored, but missed a free throw, then the Bulldogs' Jeff James was called for goal-tending on Anderson's shot with 2:28 remaining, giving YSU a 64-63 lead.
Jones tied the score by making a free throw at 2:14. That's the way it remained until Underwood scored with 36.3 seconds remaining, giving the Penguins a 66-64 lead.
Following a timeout, Butler got the ball to Sheets, who missed a 3-pointer with 14 seconds to play, but James tapped the ball back to Sheets, who gave it to Horan and he drilled his final 3-pointer with 10.7 seconds remaining.
YSU got the ball down court quickly, but freshman Quin Humphrey was only able to get off a forced shot that missed at the buzzer.
The Penguins visit Cleveland State on Saturday at 5:30 p.m.