Buzzer-Beating Put Back By Davis Gives No. 5 Emory Men's Basketball Win Over Rochester
A put-back by Emory sophomore Jake Davis at the buzzer gave the No. 5-ranked Emory men's basketball team a dramatic win over the University of Rochester Saturday afternoon in the University Athletic Association opener for both teams. The Eagles remained undefeated and upped their record to 12-0 following the 83-81 verdict over the Yellowjackets who slipped to 9-3 (0-1 UAA).
The winning bucket by Davis came off a missed three-point shot attempt in the waning seconds by Austin Claunch. The 6-foot-5 forward alertly kept playing, grabbing the missed shot in mid-air and putting back in the basket, enabling the Eagles to notch their 14th straight win at home. Davis finished the contest with 20 points and a team-high 11 rebounds, his second straight double-double and fourth of the season. He converted eight-of-16 from the field and went three-of-three from the charity stripe.
Claunch, who logged all 40 minutes of action for the fourth time this season, paced the Emory scoring attack with a career-high tying 27 points, hitting 10-of-23 from the field and all three of his free throw opportunities. He also doled out eight assists. Senior Justin Resnick came off the bench to round out the team's double-figure scorers with 11 points in 19 minutes of play, hitting four of his eight field goal opportunities including a pair of three-point field goals.
With the game contested in a playoff-like atmosphere, Emory ended the battle outshooting the visiting Yellowjackets, sinking 47.8 percent (32-of-67) of its field goal tries compared to Rochester's mark of 44.3 percent (31-of-70). The Eagles drained 40 percent (10-of-25) from three-point range with the ten triples marking the team's 17th straight win when reaching double figures in that category, while Rochester sank six of its attempts from distance in 18 tries. Both teams were solid from the charity stripe with Emory successful on all nine of its chances while Rochester hit 13 of 15. The Yellowjackets did finish with a 42-33 advantage in rebounding and were led in that department by Rob Reid who snagged a game-high 12 boards while totaling 20 points.
With Claunch scoring 12 points and Resnick adding nine, Emory led by a 38-28 margin at halftime. The Eagles came up five steals during the opening 20 minutes of played and used eight Rochester miscues in posting a 10-2 advantage in the points off turnovers category. The Eagles scored the first eight points of the game with junior Alex Greven scoring four points and Claunch and Davis two points each. A basket by UR's Tyler Seidman cut the Eagles' lead to 15-9 with 13:12 left in the stanza, but the Eagles responded with an 11-2 spurt, started by back-to-back triples by Claunch and Greven, to take a 26-11 lead with 10:16 on the clock. A pair of free throws by UR's Nate Vernon cut Emory's cushion to 11 points with 6:32 left before the Eagles came through with an 8-0 blitz in an 88 second-span, with Claunch and senior Justin Resnick hitting treys, to take the first of two 19-point bulges, 36-17, with 5:04 left. After a bucket by Claunch gave the Eagles a 38-19 margin with 3:32 on the clock, Rochester closed out the half on a determined 10-0 run, the last four coming by guard John DiBartolomeo. DiBartolomeo finished the game with 16 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists.
Emory still held a double-digit lead, 48-37, with 17:06 remaining in the game before Rochester responded with a 15-4 charge, capped by a three-pointer by DiBartolomeo, that knotted the game at 52-52 with 12:16 left. A three-point play by Davis, followed by a basket by Claunch, put Emory ahead by five with 10:50 left, but an 11-2 barrage by the Yellowjackets, keyed by a pair of three-pointers by Kevin Sheehy, put the defending UAA champs ahead by a four-point margin, 63-59, with 8:35 remaining. Claunch then took over the game for Emory scoring the team's next 11 points, hitting all four of his field goal tries over the next three minutes and 15 seconds that enabled Emory to take a three-point edge, 70-67, with 5:12 left. Both teams kept the pressure on each other with each squad scoring on their next five possessions, with Emory's final bucket in that stretch a clutch three pointer by senior Alex Gulotta that gave the Eagles a 81-77 lead with 1:51 remaining. Reid kept Rochester's hope alive scoring on a tip-in with 1:25 left followed by a basket with 32 seconds remaining that tied the affair at 81-81 – setting the stage for Davis' winning bucket for Emory.
Emory returns to action next Friday (Jan. 13) when it plays at New York University.