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UTM gives its all, falls in triple OT

UTM gives its all, falls in triple OT
The UT Martin men left it all on the court, but fell 109-105 in triple-overtime at Tennessee Tech on Thursday evening.
Troy King led the Skyhawks in scoring on Thursday with 22 points and a career-high nine rebounds in 41 minutes of action.
Reuben Clayton offered 18 points for the Skyhawks (4-14, 0-7 OVC), who placed five players in double-figures and had two others score nine points.
In the women’s game, UTM fell 74-57 to lose its share of first place in the Ohio Valley Conference.
Both UTM teams return to action on Saturday at Jacksonville State.
TN Tech 109, UTM 105 (M)
Benzor Simmons and Mike Liabo each poured in 14 points and Terence Smith added 13 points for UT Martin. Freshman Omari Minor also enjoyed his best collegiate game to date, setting career-highs in points (nine), assists (seven) and minutes (34).
For Tennessee Tech (8-7, 4-2 OVC), Kevin Murphy led the way with a game-high 25 points in 51 minutes played. Zac Swansey tallied a double-double (19 points, 11 assists), while Dennis Ogbe (18 points), Jud Dillard (14 points, 11 rebounds), Chase Dunn (10 points) and Zach Bailey (10 points) also added double-figures for the Golden Eagles.
UT Martin head coach Jason James thought Thursday’s defeat was just another stage in the growing-up process for his young Skyhawks.
“Obviously, we weren’t happy with the outcome but we’re starting to get better,” James said. “We had every opportunity to win the basketball game and we have to get better at a lot of things but I thought there were stretches tonight when we were pretty good. Down the stretch in the overtimes, we’re playing with four freshmen. It was just an overall great effort — it’s a testament to these guys and how hard they played and how hard they battled and I’ll be the first to tell you, I’m proud of our guys tonight.”
TN Tech 74, UTM 57 (W)
It’s not losing the conference lead that concerns UT Martin second-year head coach Kevin McMillan.
“We had an eight-minute span in the second-half where we could get something done and we didn’t do it. We left the door open,” McMillan said.
Tech took advantage and built a 63-53 lead with 5:00 to play in the game.
“We have to overcome the little things and we didn’t do it,” McMillan said.
Heather Butler, the nation’s leading freshman scorer, led the Skyhawks with 24 points, while freshman Jasmine Newsome tossed in 17 points. The two freshmen combined for 41 of the Skyhawks’ 57 points.
The Skyhawks other three starters, Alecia Weatherly, Taylor Hall and Jaclissa Haislip were a combined 3-for-15 from the field. Haislip added nine points and 10 rebounds to the Skyhawks’ tally. The Skyhawks shot 33 percent from the field in the game, hitting 21-of-62 attempts.
“You’re not going to win many games when you rely on two players to score,” McMillan said.