GREENVILLE, Ill. – Greenville's Kenny Greene ended the highest scoring game in St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and Eureka College men's basketball history when his desperation heave from half court banked in at the overtime buzzer, sending the Panthers to a 145-142 league win over the Red Devils. Sophomore guard Hank Thomas (Peoria, Ill./Richwoods H.S.) put up 44 points for EC, the second-highest single-game total in program history.
Thomas was the first Red Devil to score 44 points since Kameron Bell had 44 in a 91-90 EC victory at Rockford on Nov. 18, 2009. Thomas fell three points shy of the single-game Eureka scoring record of 47 set by Bob Strickland against Rose-Hulman on Dec. 7, 1957. Additionally, Eureka was seven points short of tying the single-game program record for team points set in a 149-37 win over Barat (Ill.) on Nov. 29, 1989.
Neither team led by more than three points in the overtime period. The game was tied seven times in the final 3:42. A putback by Eureka sophomore Alex Wiegand (Washington, Ill./Washington H.S.) tied the game at 142-142 moments before Green won the game at the horn.
Greene's buzzer beater was the second improbable GC 3-pointer of the night. The Panthers trailed 126-123 when Elmo Smith connected from long range with :03.2 seconds left in regulation to force overtime. Eureka's 40-footer at the end of regulation hit the top of the backboard.
Wednesday's contest featured 17 ties and 14 lead changes. Eureka overcame a 22-point first-half deficit, eventually using a 14-0 run midway through the second half to claim an 82-77 lead.
Junior guard Kendall Davis (Peoria, Ill./Limestone H.S.) added 36 for the Red Devils and sophomore guard Shea Feehan (Peoria, Ill./Notre Dame H.S.) tacked on 23. Sophomore guard Brady Sanders (Minonk, Ill./Fieldcrest H.S./Illinois Wesleyan) had nine assists. Eureka used 11 different players in the loss, all of which scored and 10 of which played at least eight minutes.
Eureka finished 48-for-85 from the floor and 14-for-29 from 3-point range. The Red Devils outrebounded Greenville, 62-53.
Shane Smith scored 34 to lead the Panthers.
Eureka will play its fourth SLIAC road game in eight days in a 3 p.m. bout with Westminster this Saturday.