FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Anthony Ireland scored a game-high 28 points as Loyola Marymount outlasted Northern Arizona 92-86 in overtime Wednesday night at the Walkup Skydome.
"I told the guys we have great effort but we can't settle thinking that it is an accomplishment," said Head Coach Jack Murphy. "We want to win and our goals and expectations are higher."
Northern Arizona (3-5) overcame an 18-point second-half deficit to take the lead twice in the final minutes but could not close the game out in regulation.
"Loyola Marymount is very talented team," said Murphy.
The Lumberjacks trailed 61-43 at the 15:10 mark of the second half but then went on a 31-14 run over the next 13 minutes to pull within one point with 2:59 left. Senior Gabe Rogers then hit a three-pointer with 2:07 to give NAU their first lead since early in the contest. NAU missed four straight free throws before the Lions tied the game on two from Ireland at the line. Rogers then hit another three with 49 seconds left to give NAU an 80-77 lead. But LMU answered with a three by Ireland with 31 seconds left. NAU had a chance to win the game in regulation but did not get a shot off.
"We have to do it over the span of the game not just in stretches," said Murphy.
LMU (5-4) out-scored the Lumberjacks 12-6 in the overtime period as NAU managed to make just 1-of-12 from the field.
Freshman DeWayne Russell led the Lumberjacks with 23 points, shooting 9-for-16 from the field with five rebounds, six assists and four steals. Rogers totaled 22 points in the game with the help of six three-pointers. Junior Max Jacobsen recorded a double-double with 10 points and a career-high 10 rebounds. Freshman Jordyn Martin added a career-high eight boards off the bench.
LMU finished with four players in double figures led by Oreland. Ashley Hamilton added 24 points, while Ayodeji Egbeyemi added 10 points. Bruce English chipped in 10 points.
The Lions took control in the first half by shooting 52 percent from the field and hitting eight three-pointers with Ireland scoring 17 points.
NAU will be off for finals next week before starting Big Sky Conference play by hosting Montana State and Montana next week in the first game of league play. The Bobcats open Big Sky play on Dec. 17 at 6:35 p.m.