Last Modified: Friday, January 25, 2013 1:53 PM
CONWAY, Ark. — Central Arkansas outlasted McNeese State 103-98 in a triple-overtime thriller at the Farris Center Thursday night.
It was a bitter pill to swallow for the Cowboys (8-9, 2-5 Southland), who had multiple opportunities to put the game away.
“This was a tough one to lose,” said McNeese coach Dave Simmons. “We should have won it in regulation.”
However, UCA forward Jarvis Garner hit 3-pointers at the end of regulation and the first overtime to extend the game on his way to a career-high 38 points.
“We didn’t have an answer for Jarvis Garner all night,” Simmons said. “The first time we had a foul to give and let him catch-and-shoot, but the second one he made an unbelievable shot.”
Garner was 14 of 19 from the field, including 6-for-9 from 3-point range. Garner also had 15 rebounds. LaQuentin Miles had 25 points and 10 assists for the Bears.
Garner’s late heroics still wouldn’t have been enough for the Bears (7-10, 2-5) if the Cowboys could make a free throw. McNeese finished 15 of 29 from the free-throw line.
“If you shoot 15 of 29, many of them 1-and-1, you don’t deserve to win a basketball game,” Simmons said.
The frustrating nature of the loss was evident in the line of guard Kevin Hardy, who finished a point short of recording the fourth triple-double in Cowboys history. Hardy finished with nine points, 11 assists and 15 rebounds while going 1-for-8 from the charity stripe.
Five Cowboys finished in double figures, led by Ledrick Eackles’ career-high 26 points off the bench.
Forward Desharick Guidry had 20 points and 11 rebounds. Jeremie Mitchell added 13, Austin Lewis had a career-high 11 and Dontae Cannon chipped in with 11 second-half points.
UCA was 14 of 20 from the free-throw line.
It was the fourth triple-OT game in McNeese history, the most recent was a 78-77 win over Louisiana Tech in the 1982 SLC tournament.