MAC Men Fall Short In Epic Comeback Bid at West Plains

It was a wild game that saw the Mineral Area College Cardinal men’s basketball team trail by 22 points in the second half at West Plains Tuesday night but fight back to send the game to overtime before falling 93-92. An early 4-point lead for the Cardinals evaporated after a 13-1 run put the Grizzlies on top 17-9. West Plains never slowed down from there, leading by as much as 16 en route to halftime and a 42-26 advantage.

But the Cardinals didn’t stop fighting, coming back from down big and using an 11-2 run to cut the deficit to 56-44. The runs kept coming, as another 10-4 spurt got MAC back within single digits at 63-54, highlighted by a driving and-one by Steve Wooten:

MAC worked their way all the way to down a point with just under a minute to play, and the Cardinals went in front on the Glister Mary Lee Play of the Game:

Mineral Area would lead 82-79 in the waning moments, but the Grizzlies came up with a big play late:

With the score tied at the end of regulation, West Plains took full advantage of its second chance and opened up the overtime period with a 6-0 run that gave the Grizzlies an 88-82 lead. Wooten pulled the Cardinals within two with a free throw with 36 seconds to play, setting the stage for a dramatic finish:

Clayborn knocked down the only free throw he needed to win the game and drop MAC to 18-7 on the season. Wooten led the Cardinals with 32 points, and MAC head coach Luke Strege (stray-gee) notes that the comeback attempt falling short proved to be a rare misstep:

The Cardinal men are back on the road Thursday night at Western Kentucky Tech. Pregame coverage starts at 6:45, and the tip-off is at 7 on KREI.