Louisville, Ky. - The Defiance College men's basketball team opened up the win column in thrilling style Monday evening as they defeated Spalding University 73-72.
Coach Scott Cutter's side looked poised to find their first win of the season as they tipped-off action. After quickly jumping out to a 4-3 lead via four Jordan Maschino (Bradford / Covington) points, the Yellow Jackets looked to extend their early lead.
Sean Tyson (Columbus / Centennial) stole the ball from the Golden Eagles and sank a fast-break layup to give DC the largest lead of the half 22-13, with a little over eight minutes remaining. Spalding slowly knocked down the deficit and found space for a jump shot with just one second on the clock. The home side headed to the locker room with a 34-31 lead.
DC found themselves in hot water to open up the second half of play. Nine straight points for the Golden Eagles had the home side with an early advantage. The Yellow Jackets were not going down easily. Slowly closing the deficit, DC emphatically marked their comeback with a Malachi McClain (Lansing, Mich. / Holt) dunk with a little under 10 minutes remaining on the clock.
Neither side could grab a distinct advantage in the remaining minutes, swapping the lead four more times.
Staring at a 72-69 Golden Eagle lead, DC looked to mount a final push. Marell Jordan (Lafayette, Ind. / Lafayette Jefferson) headed to the charity stripe with just eight ticks on the clock, sinking both free-throws. Forced to foul, Defiance sent Spalding to the line as the Golden Eagles looked to close out the victory.
Grabbing the rebound from the missed free-throw, Jordan looked to make his way up the floor. Putting on a burst of speed the freshman cut into the lane and rolled a layup in as time expired to give the Yellow Jackets the thrilling victory.
With the win, Defiance improves to 1-8 on the season. The Yellow Jackets will continue non-conference action on December 28-29 as they welcome Geneva, Heidelberg, and Penn State Behrend to the Karl H. Weaner Center for the 44th annual Purple and Gold Tournament.