It just doesn't.
I was actually at last night's game at Savage, so here are a few impressions. As I have said before, I understand that this is not a very good Rocket team, and I understand that almost everyone has beaten them. But, I will still contend that this is the kind of game we would have lost last year, or even in December.
If you look at the game flow below, you will see that BG had a 11 point lead with about 6:00 left to go in the game. From there, we started to struggle on the offensive side, and UT went on a little run and closed the gap pretty well. Now, in Savannah or at Central Arkansas, these were chances for our team to lose control of a game.
We are now at the point where we didn't let that happen. We had enough plays in the tank coming home to win the game. That included taking a couple charges, getting some free throws, getting stops, rebounds, etc.
From The Blade this morning....
UT did a couple things better than they have in general, namely, rebounding and getting to the free throw line, as you can see below.
"Our guys, they show great will at the end of games," BG coach Louis Orr said.
"They made the plays necessary in order to win," UT coach Gene Cross said. "When the plays presented themselves to us, we didn't make them. They had a lot of confidence going in, they were going to make the plays."
The difference was field goal defense (The Rockets shot about 38% and were 1-11 from three-point range) while BG shot 42% and made 7 threes.
There was one freaky anomaly, that that was that the Rockets shot 20 free throws, and Jonathan Amos shot 19 of them. I cannot recall a game where a team got so many free throws and one player shot 95% of them. Luckily, he missed six of them!
Daryl Clements led BG with 15 points and had three key FTs down the stretch to ice the game. Nate Miller had 14 points and 7 boards, and Otis Polk scored six early points and had 7 boards, and while he fouled out, I think our rebounding profile was much stronger when he was in the game.
Brian Moten had 8 points off the bench, and while it wasn't his best game, he did hit a big three down the stretch when we really needed a basket.
One final note. Savage is a great facility. Very impressive. The most professional-style environment I have seen on a college campus, and despite their record, their crowd was decent sized and energetic. The scoreboard is fantastic, and sightlines to the floor are good.
This is the first win for BG in Toledo in nine seasons, so it was nice to pick it up. Also, we need to keep pace with our brethren in the East.