Southern Oregon hit 11 consecutive free throws down the stretch to upset No. 25 Eastern Oregon 80-77 in Saturday’s Cascade Collegiate Conference men’s basketball matchup at Bob Riehm Arena.
With the win SOU improves to 14-8 overall and 7-4 in the conference, while Eastern Oregon falls to 13-6 and 6-4 in the CCC. Southern Oregon will return to action against Warner Pacific next Friday while Eastern Oregon faces No. 3 Oregon Tech tomorrow.
Eric Thompson led the Raiders with 26 points, shooting 7-of-11 from the field, and added a game-high nine rebounds whileKyle Tedder added 19 points and Jordan Highland tallied 13 in the win. Eastern Oregon’s Jamar Johnson shot 7-of-12 for a game-high 28 points while Travares Peterson led the team with seven boards and added 13 points. Jeff Ranstrom finished with 12 for the Mountaineers.
Southern Oregon took an early lead in the first half after hitting two consecutive three-pointers, but Eastern continued to have an answer shooting the ball. Both teams battled back and forth as the Mountaineers took their first lead with just under six minutes remaining in the half.
Eastern Oregon would go on to hold a 43-42 halftime lead. The Raiders finished the half shooting above 50 percent going 12-of-23 from the field and hitting 6-of-11 from beyond the arc. Eastern Oregon was not far behind hitting 15-of-35 and 5-of-12 for three.
Both teams exchanged points as the second half began until the Raiders used a 12-3 run to build their largest lead of the night at 54-46 with just under 13 minutes to play.
Eastern fought back to tie the game at 71-71 on one of Johnson’s six treys of the night with 2:47 left to go but would not be able to regain the lead as the two teams played to the final seconds with the Raiders making the clutch free throws in the closing minutes.
A total of 50 fouls occurred as SOU closed the game with a 75 percent free throw mark (30-of-40), taking 16 more attempts than the Mountaineers.