Eastern Kentucky men’s basketball edged out a win over Southeast Missouri at McBrayer Arena on Saturday night, and it all came down to the last seven seconds, as sophomore JacQuess Hobbs nailed the game winner. EKU defeated SEMO by a final of 85-83.
This was also a historic night for EKU basketball and senior Nick Mayo. Mayo surpassed 2,000 points in his career at EKU. He is the first player to ever do so in school history. Mayo finished the game with a team-high 24 points and eight rebounds.
Eastern out-rebounded the Redhawks 36 to 28 in the game.
“We played our tails off in the first half,” head coach A.W. Hamilton said after the game.
The second half was a different story for the Colonels.
“The second half we just could not turn them over. They (SEMO) hit tough shot after tough shot,” Hamilton said.
After the game, Hamilton credited SEMO’s guards for playing well and said the Redhawk’s press bothered his team in the last few minutes of the game.
Eastern’s largest lead was 12 with 5:47 remaining in the game, but SEMO found a way to come back in the last few minutes of the game. Forcing turnovers helped SEMO close the gap late.
“We had some careless turnovers and we fouled a three point shooter,” Hamilton said.
After SEMO made a free throw to tie the game at 83, Hobbs took the ball all the way to the hoop and scored in the lane at the buzzer.
“We really just wanted to get it into JacQuess Hobbs or Jomaru Brown and either one of those guys just race it down and try to get to the basket,” Hamilton said.
Brown came into the game after Mayo picked up his fifth foul and fouled out of the game.
Eastern Kentucky is back in action on Thursday as they face Jacksonville State at Berea College. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.