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Hudson’s game-winner lifts Midway men’s basketball to 77-76 victory

WILL HUDSON, a sophomore from Calhoun, Ky., hits the game-winning three at the buzzer to give Midway the 77-76  victory over Cincinnati Christian University. (Photo by Mark Mahan)

Sophomore guard Will Hudson, hit a triple as time expired to give the Midway University men’s basketball team a thrilling 77-76 victory over Cincinnati Christian (Ohio) on Thursday night inside Marshall Gymnasium.

With his team trailing 76-74, the Calhoun, Ky. native took a pass from Gerry Milligan and stepped into a rhythm triple that hit nothing but the bottom of the net to lift Midway (7-17, 3-12 RSC) to the 77-76 win.

To set the stage for the thrilling finish, Midway was forced to battle back from a 10 point deficit with 3:30 remaining in regulation. The Eagles got the deficit down to single digits after Bryson Harris knocked down a pair of free throw.

After a pair of turnovers and a pair of missed free throws from Cincinnati Christian, momentum began to go in Midway’s favor after a five-point swing in one possession.

Freshman, Ty Sparling hit a trey from the top of the key to cut the deficit to five. A foul occurred after the shot, Midway was granted a pair of free throws.

Fellow freshman, Kwon Evans calmly toed the line and drained both freebies as Midway took the deficit down to four. After a steal and a layup from Bryson Harris, the home team cut the lead in half, 72-70, with two minutes remaining in regulation.

Cincinnati Christian (11-15, 6-8 RSC) stretched the lead back to four, but after Gerry Milligan stole an inbounds pass and hit a layup, the lead was back down to two with 32 seconds left.

After CCU hit 1 of 2 at the charity stripe to push the lead to 75-72, senior DJ Townsend drove to the basket and converted a layup to cut the lead down to one, 75-74, with six seconds remaining.

Blake Walsman was fouled on the ensuing inbounds as he stepped to the free throw line with a chance to push the lead to three. Walsman, however, saw his first free throw bounce off the rim and after he hit the second, Midway trailed 76-74 with five seconds remaining.

Will Hudson inbounded the ball to Gerry Milligan, who raced up the court and after he passed half court, he hit a trailing Hudson who stepped into a rhythm triple that hit noting but the bottom of the net to lift Midway to the 77-76 win.

Hudson only scored nine points, but netted the most important three points of the game.

DJ Townsend led the Eagles with 20 points off the bench. Evans added 14 points to go with eight rebounds and seven blocks. Sparling added 11, while Harris and Jose Bustamante both pitched in with eight points apiece.

Midway finished the game shooting 42.4 percent (28-66) from the floor and 26.9 percent (7-26) from beyond the arc. Cincinnati Christian shot 41.7 percent (25-60) overall and 44.4 percent (8-18) from long distance.

The Eagles traveled to IU Southeast on Tuesday, but they return home for one final game when they host Brescia on Thursday, Feb. 15, for Senior Day at 7:30 p.m.

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