This CBI championship round was an exciting and incredible from start to finish but in the end, the Nevada Wolf Pack came out on top as they defeated the Morehead State Eagles in overtime 85-82 in Game 3 of the CBI Championship Finals. The win gives the Wolf Pack their first ever postseason basketball championship in school history.
The Wolf Pack lead by as many as 13 points in the game but the Eagles from Morehead, Kentucky never gave up as they chopped away at the lead and even took the lead when Malik Maitland (12 points, nine assists) made a three-pointer to give the Eagles a 64-63 lead late in the second half.
The Wolf Pack re-took the lead at 74-70 but a Lamontray Harris three pointer cut the Nevada lead to 74-73. With 16 seconds left in regulation, Tyron Criswell (21 points, 11 rebounds and named CBI Tournament MVP) had a chance to extend the Wolf Pack lead late in the game but went 1 for 2 at the free throw line. With the score at 75-73, Morehead State's DeJuan Marrerro took the ball to the rim and was fouled by Lindsey Drew (eight points, seven assists) then Marrero hit both of his free throws to tie the game at 75-75. Cameron Oliver's desperation three was no good at the end of regulation.
In the overtime session, both teams traded shots but with 13 seconds left in overtime, DJ Fenner (17 points) attacked the rim and passed the ball to Lindsey Drew but the pass was deflected yet ended up in the hands of Tyron Criswell and he made the layup to give Nevada an 83-82 lead. From there, the Wolf Pack held on to the lead and secured the win and the CBI Championship.
The Nevada basketball program under first-year head coach Eric Musselman has performed one of the greatest turnarounds in college basketball history. This was a team that won nine games last year and for them to come from that place to win a postseason championship is an amazing accomplishment.
And I think this is only the beginning for this program. With the players returning next year to go along with some talented freshman and transfers who will be eligible next season, expect the Wolf Pack to be the in the hunt for many years to come.