SALISBURY, Md. - The Salisbury University men's basketball team dropped an overtime thriller to Christopher Newport University, 78-74, Wednesday evening at Maggs Physical Activities Center. The matchup was expected to be close, as the two teams split the season series and had identical records in the Capital Athletic Conference this season. The Sea Gulls held the tiebreaker to host tonight's first-round matchup.
The contest was back-and-forth the entire night; fittingly the game was tied at the half and at the end of regulation. Neither team was able to build more than a two-possession lead in the first 40 minutes of play, as each team had a game-high lead of four points, twice for each team, during regulation.
The action was fast and furious down the stretch of regulation, as both teams had opportunities to walk off with the win as the clock wound down. Christopher Newport's (18-8) Mike Cherry had a good look with five seconds remaining that came up short. Senior Dominic Milburn grabbed the rebound, raced past the halfcourt line and tossed up a prayer that came up short. With that, the teams geared up for overtime.
The Sea Gulls struck first in the overtime period with a three-pointer from the left corner by senior Brandyn Wilkerson. Christopher Newport would score the next four buckets to take a 70-64 lead with 2:25 left in overtime. Salisbury battled back, pulling within a point, 72-71, with 34 seconds left. From that point forward, the Captains would hit each of their six free throws, pulling away for the four-point win.
The trio of Salisbury seniors led the Sea Gull attack. Milburn scored a team-high 17 points, Wilkerson 14 and Tim Harwood 13.
Christopher Newport was led by Tra Benefield with 26 points and seven rebounds. Luc Atangana added 16 points off the bench, while Mike Cherry chipped in 14.