Men's Basketball Comes Up Just Short Against EWU
Jan. 4, 2007
GREELEY, Colo. - The University of Northern Colorado men's basketball team's valiant comeback fell just short Thursday night against the Eastern Washington Eagles at Butler-Hancock Sports Pavilion.
In front of a loud 1,089 fans, Northern Colorado fell 88-87 in a down-to-the-wire affair against Eastern Washington. The Eagles were led by pro prospect Rodney Stuckey's 25 points and 10 assists. EWU took advantage of a strong performance from its bench, which scored 42 points.
The Bears (2-13, 0-3 Big Sky) took a 2-1 lead in the opening minute, but it was their only lead of the game. Northern Colorado fell behind early to the hot-shooting Eagles (8-7, 2-1), who was able to take a 47-37 lead going into halftime. The Bears were able to go into the locker room on a high note, however, as freshman guard Darren Moore hit a jumper with three seconds left on the clock.
Northern Colorado cut the lead to seven at the start of the second half, but the Eagles soon took a 58-42 lead with 18:12 left. It looked as if EWU had things all but wrapped up, as it held a double-figure lead until 6:31 was left in the game. But as the Bears have proved time and time again this season, they can't be counted out.
A missed free throw by Stuckey with 14 seconds left gave the ball back to Northern Colorado, who trailed 87-84. But a turnover by junior guard Terry Anderson with seven seconds remaining handed it right back to the Eagles.
Eastern Washington's Rhett Humphrey sealed the game by making one of two free-throws with four seconds to go to put the Eagles up by four.
Sean Taibi was able to hit a desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer for the final margin.
Birden dropped in a career-high 29 to lead all scorers. Archibeque collected his first double-double of the season and the 13th of his career.
Northern Colorado will continue its Big Sky homestand with a showdown against the Portland State Vikings (10-6, 1-2) at 7:05 p.m. on Saturday.