In desperate need of a big win after taking losses to Indiana and Kansas in the last ten days, the Marquette Golden Eagles stepped up and accomplished their task Friday night in Brooklyn, picking up a 77-74 overtime victory over Chris Mack and the Louisville Cardinals.
The Golden Eagles looked to be in some trouble for most of the evening, as Louisville had a 3-5 point lead for nearly the entire evening before Joey Hauser tied the game at 53 with a layup with 7:16 to play. The teams would trade the lead down the stretch, as Louisville went up by four with 43 seconds to play. Markus Howard went to the rack and drew a foul, making the free throw and cutting the lead to one. On the ensuing possession, Christen Cunningham was sent to the free throw line and hit one of two. Joey Hauser answered with a layup, and Louisville missed three wide open chances on the other end (two of which were layups) to go to overtime.
The Golden Eagles clamped down in overtime, holding Louisville to just one field goal and continuing to excel at the free throw line (Marquette went 20-23 on the night, 5-6 in overtime) to hold off the Cardinals for the crucial victory.
It was a night to forget for the referees, as one big blown call each way overshadowed what was a very good game. A clear Louisville three pointer was ruled a two after video review, and Sacar Anim got two points taken away from him when a foul was taken off the board. If you go by that logic, Marquette should have led by a point at the end of regulation. However, the ESPN broadcast crew continued to harp on one of these calls and not the other. Care to guess which one?
Marquette returns to Milwaukee to face Charleston Southern Tuesday night.