In a game with 15 lead changes, Lovell Williams ensured the UW-Stout men’s basketball team got the final one.
Williams made a go-ahead 3 midway through the second overtime period and the Blue Devils held on for a thrilling 95-90 win over rival UW-Eau Claire on Wednesday in Menomonie.
Williams connected from deep with 2:41 left in double overtime, putting the Blue Devils ahead 91-89. The Blugolds eventually closed the gap to one, but Armani Tinsley made a layup and Brody Fox hit a pair of free throws to give Stout the wild victory.
It capped a massive rally for Stout (11-5, 2-3), which trailed by 14 at one point in the first half. The Blue Devils outscored Eau Claire 40-29 in the second half and had a chance to win in regulation until Brock Voigt’s free throw in the final minute forced overtime.
Stout led again late in the first overtime period, but Nolan Blair’s free throw with 40 seconds left pushed the game to a second extra period. Blair gave the Blugolds (8-8, 1-4) an 89-88 lead with a 3 early in double overtime, but Williams answered with one of his own to put the Blue Devils ahead for good.
Stout only led for 8:48 of the game, but managed to come out on top.
A 15-2 run midway through the first half had turned a one-point Blugolds lead into a 14-point advantage. The deficit remained in that range the rest of the half. Eau Claire shot 53% from the floor in the first half, taking 46 points into the locker room. But it was a different story after halftime.
In the second half, the Blue Devils shot a shade under 50%. They opened the half on a 9-1 run to get right back in the game.
Tinsley had a game-high 31 points and added nine rebounds and six assists to lead the Blue Devils. Williams recorded a triple-double with 19 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. Fox scored 28 points.
Voigt had 20 points to lead Eau Claire. He added seven rebounds. Michael Casper and Cade Hall added 14 points each, and Spencer Page had a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
Stout’s victory snapped a three-game skid and pushed Eau Claire’s losing streak to four. The Blue Devils host UW-Oshkosh on Saturday afternoon, while Eau Claire hosts UW-La Crosse that evening.
UW-Stout 95, UW-Eau Claire 90 (2 OT)
Eau Claire: Michael Casper 14, Brock Voigt 20, Carter Brooks 6, Spencer Page 11, Alex Voigt 6, Cade Hall 14, Nolan Blair 8, Carter Huschka 2, Drew Maloney 9.
Stout: Armani Tinsley 31, Brody Fox 28, Lovell Williams 19, Tyreese Alexander 2, Nick Jungel 10, Jarnard Smith 1, Preston Briggs 2, Brenden Weis 2.
3-pointers: Eau Claire 11 (Casper 4, Maloney 3, Brooks, Page, Hall, Blair), Stout 9 (Tinsley 5, Williams 3, Fox).
Halftime: Eau Claire 46-35.