ARLINGTON, Va. – The No. 17 Salisbury University men's basketball team earned a thrilling 57-56 Capital Athletic Conference victory at Marymount (Va.) University on Saturday afternoon.
The contest featured five ties and 14 lead changes, as Salisbury (14-3, 9-1 CAC) came from two points down with less than 30 seconds to go to earn the win. Senior Justin Witmer was the hero on Saturday, stepping back for a three-pointer from the top of the key that dropped with 0.4 seconds left on the clock to win the game.
Witmer scored a game-high 17 points in the game, and the game-winning bucket was the only three-pointer he made in the game of six attempts. Salisbury struggled as a team from outside, hitting just 2-of-18, but Witmer made the one that mattered.
The game winner was the only Salisbury field goal made in the final six minutes of the game, as the Saints (8-9, 5-5 CAC) cut away a six-point lead that Salisbury held with six minutes to play after Terray Quickley's layup.
It was a 7-0 run for Marymount, started with Ibrahim Kamara's three-pointer, which gave the Saints a 52-51 lead with under three minutes to play, but a free throw from senior Wyatt Smith and two from the charity stripe off the hand of classmate Gordon Jeter made it 54-52 in Salisbury's favor with 1:39 showing.
The Saints were good on four from the stripe, the final two coming from Alex Danko with 29 seconds left, setting up Witmer for the game winner.
Marymount grabbed an early lead in the game, and held the edge until an Al Leder jumper with less than nine minutes to play in the first half put the Sea Gulls ahead, 15-14.
The lead changed hands four times in the first half and the Saints led 27-26 at the break, but the back-and-forth affair continued throughout the final 20 minutes, with neither team stretching their lead to more than Salisbury's eight-point edge that happened when Quickley hit Salisbury's other three-pointer in the contest, with 7:12 left in the game, making it 49-41.
Quickley made the next Salisbury field goal at the six-minute mark, setting up the exciting finish.
Along with his 17 points, Witmer had four rebounds and a pair of steals, while Smith scored 14 and added six rebounds. Quickley finished with nine points off the bench, and Jeter pulled in eight rebounds in the contest.
Salisbury is back in action on Wednesday, January 25 for a big CAC showdown at No. 3 Christopher Newport University. The teams enter the contest tied atop the CAC standings, with 9-1 records in conference play.