NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. - The Marist men's basketball team won a dramatic come-from-behind victory in double-overtime at Iona by a final score of 105-104. The Red Foxes fought back from a 12-point deficit in the second half to survive and eventually earn the one point win; Marist's highest scoring victory in 17 years.
Junior Adam Kemp (Sherrill, N.Y.) registered a career high in points (29) to go along with 16 rebounds, while blocking seven shots to lead the Red Foxes, though Chavaughn Lewis (Bronx, N.Y.) had the most memorable moment with a running three-quarter buzzer beater at the end of the first overtime period to tie the game at 94-94. The sophomore finished with 21 points, 10 rebounds and a career-high eight assists.
Two more Red Foxes notched double-figures as junior Jay Bowie (Tampa, Fla.) returned from injury with an outstanding effort with 21 points and seven rebounds and sophomore Isaiah Morton (Vineland, N.J.) nearly recorded a double-double with 18 points and nine assists in a complete game of 50 minutes.
The game opened with a hectic pace as the fans at the Hynes Athletic would expect with the Gaels coming into Thursday night's game with an 81.8 scoring average. Both teams were into double-digits at 10 to 10 just 4:06 into the contest. A trio of Red Foxes got Marist to that mark as T.J. Curry (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and Morton registered three-pointers and Lewis netted a pair of two-point baskets.
With the score 21-16 at 12:10, back-to-back baskets from close in by Kemp spearheaded a 15-2 Red Fox run that would last 5:49 and see Marist go from five down to eight up.
After a few trading of baskets and the score settling at 34-27, the Gaels closed the half on a 19-4 pace to go into the locker room up eight over the Red Foxes, 46-38.
Coming out after the break, Iona slowly built its lead to a game-high 12 at 52-40 by 16:43.
Down 10 at 58-48 with 14:26 left in regulation, Marist went on an 11-3 run turn the game into a one-possession contest at 61-59 at 10:06. In a well-rounded scoring effort, four Red Foxes registered points during this span.
Iona held off Marist for another three-plus minutes before the Red Foxes finally tied it up at 68-68 at 6:54. From that point on, the Gaels and Red Foxes would be tied four more times, though the score only changed hands twice, as Marist led for all, but one possession.
Tied at the end of regulation at 84-84, the host Gaels ran out to six-point lead in the first overtime, leaving things bleak for the Red Foxes. After a Bowie three-pointer and two made free throws by Iona's Lamont Jones, the game was 92-87 with 1:58 remaining.
In the final 10 seconds of the first overtime period the teams combined for four pressure-filled possessions. After a split from the foul line by Jones, Morton raced down the court and made it two-point game, 93-91. After another split from the line by Iona's Tre Bowman, the stage was set for Lewis' buzzer beating magic; Dorvell Carter (Bronx, N.Y.) in-bounded the ball with three seconds to play to Lewis at Marist's own foul line, with a few dribbles, Lewis loaded up and launched from three-quarters of the court away; the ball rattled in and the game was set for second overtime at 94-94.
In the second overtime period, the Red Foxes took a one-point lead at 97-96 off of a Bowie three-pointer at 2:27. After Iona re-took the lead, a three-pointer 1:46 later by Morton gave Marist the lead once again at 101-100. This lead would hold serve as the Red Foxes put the game into the books with a final score of 105-104.
This was Marist's first win with over 100 points since Feb. 8, 1996 versus Long Island when it defeated the Blackbirds, 104-74. The program's most recent 100-point game was a 119-108 setback at Niagara on Jan. 18, 1999.
With the victory, Marist improved to 6-18, 3-10 in the MAAC, while Iona fell to 14-10, 8-5 in the MAAC.
The Red Foxes will be back in action on Sunday, Feb. 10 when they host Loyola at McCann Arena. Tip-off for the MAAC contest is slated for 2 p.m.