Late Surge, Free Throws End UWM Winning Streak At Three
Feb. 20, 2010
MILWAUKEE - Tyrone Lewis scored 23 points and Niagara scored 17 of the final 24 points of the game to claim an 85-79 win over the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Saturday night in a BracketBusters contest at the U.S. Cellular Arena.
The Panthers (16-13) overcame a 14-point first half deficit to lead by four with 4:29 remaining in the game, but Niagara (16-13) made four field goals and nine free throws from there to pull out the win.
After shooting 69 free throws over the last two games, UWM shot just 12 Saturday night in spite of scoring 40 points in the paint. Meanwhile, Niagara made 17-of-24 from the line while making 52.7 percent of its shots overall, including 10 three-pointers in the first half.
Ricky Franklin scored 22 points and James Eayrs added 14 for Milwaukee, which shot a season-best 54.4 percent from the floor. Anthony Hill added 12 and Lonnie Boga 11 for the Panthers, who saw their three-game winning streak snapped.
UWM actually had a 26-25 lead on a Hill basket with 8:30 remaining in the first half, but the Purple Eagles scored 20 of the next 25 points to claim a 45-31 advantage. Lewis had 12 points on four 3-pointers during the run, which also included a pair of threes by Demetrius Williamson.
But, Milwaukee battled back, pulling within 45-37 on a follow-up basket by Tony Meier with 2:25 remaining and eventually to 49-42 on a Hill basket just before halftime.
UWM kept the comeback going in the second half, as hoops by Eayrs and Franklin brought the Panthers within 49-46 before a three-pointer by Franklin made it 53-52 with 15:20 remaining.
Milwaukee's first second-half lead at 57-55 when Franklin converted a layup with 12:45 left, and the teams traded the advantage from there. Milwaukee eventually led 70-66 after baskets by Boga and Ja'Rob McCallum and the advantage was still 72-68 on a Boga layin with 4:29 remaining.
Anthony Nelson gave Niagara the lead back for good at 76-74 on a runner with 1:58 remaining. Milwaukee then turned the ball over on its next possession when Eayrs was called for a disputed traveling violation by the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference officiating crew, wiping out a UWM layup. The Purple Eagles eventually built their lead to 80-74, but the Panthers crawled back to within 81-79 on a three-pointer by Eayrs with 26.1 seconds remaining. Milwaukee did not score again.
UWM will now wrap up the regular season with a pair of games in Chicago. The Panthers take on Loyola Thursday night before squaring off with UIC Saturday afternoon. Both games can be seen live in Milwaukee on Time Warner Cable's Sports 32.