Senior Tyler Kohl scored a career-high 33 points to lead the Central Connecticut men's basketball team to a 93-90 win over Maine in double-overtime on Saturday at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor, ME. Kohl paced four Blue Devils in double-figures to overshadow a pair of buzzer-beaters by the Black Bears that extended the game. The win improved Central to 6-6 on the season overall.
Kohl was efficient in scoring his 33 points, going 8-of-12 from the field and hitting 5-of-8 three-pointers. He converted 12-of-13 foul shots, including 6-of-6 in overtime. He added seven rebounds, four assists and three steals.
Freshman Ian Krishnan added 17 points with four rebounds and three assists. Senior Deion Bute finished with 13 points on 3-of-3 field goals and 7-of-8 foul shooting. Junior Jamir Coleman added his first career double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
Central returns to action on Saturday, Dec. 29, when it faces Oregon State in the final non-conference game of the season.
Both teams started the game shooting well as CCSU hit 4-of-6 and Maine made 5-of-6 to start the game. Consecutive three-pointers by freshman Ian Krishnan gave Central a 13-10 lead just over five minutes into the game.
The Blue Devils opened the game hitting 4-of-8 from three-point range, while Maine opened the game 0-of-4 from the arc. Senior Tyler Kohl hit his first three treys, including back-to-back attempts, to give CCSU a 19-14 lead.
A three-pointer by Kohl would give CCSU its biggest lead at 24-17 before Maine responded with a quick 5-0 run. Kohl would stem the run with a pair of foul shots.
Kohl would score eight straight for the Blue Devils and a short baseline jumper pushed the CCSU lead to 29-25 with 4:49 left in the period. Three straight foul shots by Krishnan and freshman Karrington Wallace would make it 32-27 before the Black Bears scored the final five points of the period to tie the game at the intermission.
Central would go scoreless over the final 2:06 of the period and hit just 1-of-9 from the field in the final five minutes in the half. CCSU shot 8-of-22 (.364) from the field in the opening half, but was 6-of-14 (.429) from the arc. Kohl would have 17 points in the half, hitting 5-of-6 shots and 4-of-5 from the arc.
The Blue Devils held the Black Bears scoreless for the opening 3:11 of the second half, but could only build a four-point lead at 36-32. Kohl would convert a three-point play followed by a dunk from Wallace to give CCSU a 41-39 lead with 15:42 to play.
Central held Maine to 1-of-5 during a stretch it outscored the hosts 6-1. A foul shot from senior Deion Bute would push the CCSU lead to 49-43 with 11:33 to play.
The Blue Devils would hit 4-of-5 shots, including back-to-back layups by junior Joe Hugley to take a 53-45 lead with 9:41 to play.
Maine would then hold Central to a 1-of-4 shooting stretch and would hit 4-of-5 on its own end to trim the CCSU leads to 55-52 after back-to-back buckets by Andrew Fleming.
Central came back with a 7-0 run to take its largest lead at 62-53 after a Bute layup. The Black Bears responded with six unanswered points to cut the CCSU lead to 62-59 with 3:33 to play.
The Blue Devils would push the lead to 69-63 with 2:09 to play after a three-pointer by Coleman, but Isaiah White would score five unanswered for Maine to make it a one-point game with 1:17 to play.
Kohl would hit a pair of foul shots to push the CCSU lead to 73-70 with five seconds left. Maine would set up a final play after advancing pas halfcourt and get the ball to Sergio El Darwich who hit a game-tying three-pointer as time expired to force overtime.
In the extra period, the teams owuld go back-and-forth until Kohl converted four straight foul shots with 42 seconds to play. His last foul shot put CCSU ahead 84-81 with 22 seconds to play. The Black Bears again advanced over halfcourt and set up a final play with :07 to play. Again, El Darwich got the ball sank a three-pointer with :01 to play and send the game to double-overtime.
The teams traded leads in the second overtime until Kohl hit a jumper with 26 seconds left to give CCSU a 91-89 lead. After El Darwich went 1-of-2 at the foul line, Coleman would hit a pair of foul shots to give Central a three-point lead. The Black Bears had another chance to tie the game, but White's three-pointer was off the mark and freshman Thai Segwai got the rebound to seal the CCSU win.
The Blue Devils finished the game shooting 26-of-59 (.441) from the field and were 10-of-30 (.333) from three-point range. Central converted 31-of-35 (.886) at the foul line, including 9-of-9 in overtime.
El Darwich led Maine with 26 points and White had 22 points. The Black Bears were 32-of-72 (.444) from the field and 17-of-25 (.680) from the foul line. The Black Bears held a 42-37 rebounding advantage.
The win was the first double-overtime victory for CCSU since a 94-91 over Saint Francis U on Feb. 28, 2013.
The Blue Devils close out the non-conference schedule on Dec. 29 with a matchup at Oregon State.