Monday, November 15, 2010

Umeadi's free throw boosts Prairie Stars

Chigozie Umeadi hit a game-winning free throw with 2.3 seconds remaining as the University of Illinois Springfield men’s basketball team survived a second straight thriller to beat Northwood University 80-79 Saturday in the GLVC/GLIAC Challenge at The Recreation and Athletic Center.

On Friday, UIS’ Brandon Farmer drained a game-winning shot with 4.3 seconds left in a season-opening 67-66 win over Lake Superior State.

“I told the guys after last night I enjoy winning and let’s make it a little easier,” UIS first-year coach Ben Wierzba said.

That didn’t happen. The game featured 25 lead changes.

The Prairie Stars trailed Northwood 34-33 at halftime. Cameron Joyce’s 3-pointer put the Timberwolves ahead 77-75 with 1:30 to go in the second half and the back-and-forth battle continued. A pair of free throws by Northwood forward Darvin Ham tied the contest at 79 with 10 seconds remaining.

Ham fouled Umeadi, setting up the game-winning foul shot. Umeadi made the first of two free throws. Northwood guard Joe Powers rebounded Umeadi’s miss on the second shot, then called a timeout.

Umeadi stole the inbounds pass, keeping the Timberwolves (0-2) from getting off a last-second shot. He scored three of the Stars’ final five points. The sophomore forward finished with a career-high 21 points and eight rebounds, both team highs.

The win was featured in a November 14, 2010, article in The State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article