The Sun Devils went on a 13-2 run to close the game to seal the victory.
(TEMPE, AZ) Sun Devil Men’s Basketball engineered an incredible comeback in the final minutes, defeating UMass Lowell 71-69 in a Thursday night thriller at Desert Financial Arena.
Frankie Collins scored seven of his 11 points in the final 2:05 of the game, including two layups in the final minute to tie the game and eventually score the game-winner to lead Arizona State (2-1) to victory.
Jamie Neal cashed in an opening three after Frankie Collins was able to find him on the inbound pass at 19:47. The River Hawks answered right back with a three of their own, whereas they outscored ASU 7-2 forcing an early timeout with 15:26 remaining with the River Hawks ahead 10-5.
UMass Lowell remained ahead at the 11:53 mark in the half 14-6, but two buckets by Jose Perez and Bryant Selebangue cut the deficit to four, 14-10, but an 8-0 run by the River Hawks extended their lead 22-10 before Jose Perez drew a three-point play to end the run cutting the lead to nine with 5:41 remaining.
Alonzo Gaffney drained an open three followed by back-to-back layups by Selebangue and Collins to go on a quick 7-3 span to make it 25-20 going into the final three minutes of the half.
UMass Lowell went into the half ahead 31-22 after a last second putback ended on a 6-2 span.
Jose Perez cashed in two from the stripe then Neal swiftly got to the hoop cutting the lead to seven, 33-26 with 18:43. Following a slam by Gaffney, the River Hawks took advantage from the stripe, extending their lead 38-28 with 17:19 left.
Perez drew another foul, cashing in on the jumper but was unable to complete the three-point play, as another layup by UMass Lowell put them ahead 40-30 at the 15:39 mark. The West Virginia transfer cashed in from deep putting his point total at 14, followed by ASU making three straight from the stripe cutting into the lead 43-37.
UMass Lowell extended their lead to ten, 54-44 with 8:32 left in regulation after Perez notched another bucket forcing a River Hawk timeout which followed with a dunk. A Kamari Lands trey brought the deficit to nine, 56-47 at the 7;54 mark.
Returning from the break, the Sun Devils managed to get within four points with 5:21 remaining in the game, but UMass Lowell made three of their next four field-goals to extend the lead back to 11, but a quick three from Collins forced an ASU timeout.
Following the stoppage, the River Hawks took a 67-57 lead, but a Neal three and two layups by Gaffney and Neal cut the lead to three, including the junior cashing the three-point play cutting the lead to two, 67-65. Another quick turnover by UMass Lowell prompted Collins to tie the game at 67 with a layup with 1:06 remaining.
After a scramble for the ball, Collins forced another River Hawk turnover with 36.6 in regulation. Jose Perez cashed in his seventh bucket of the night to reach the 20 point mark to give ASU a 69-67 lead, their first lead since 3-0 at the 19:47 mark in the first half.
UMass Lowell was fouled on an ensuing layup with 9.2 seconds left whereas they made both to tie the contest at 69-69. But Collins went coast-to-coast with a silky up-and-under to give the Sun Devils a 71-69 lead with 2.1 left as a steal by Collins sealed up the win for the Sun Devils.
Sun Devil Men’s Basketball will roll the dice and head to Las Vegas to take part in the Vegas Showdown to faceoff against BYU. Tip-off is slated for 10 p.m. MST and can be seen on ESPN2 and can be heard on the radio waves on Arizona Sports 98.7FM with Tim Healey and Kyle Dodd on the call. Tickets for Sun Devil Men’s Basketball 2023-24 non-conference games are on sale now. Visit the following link for more information. Conference games will become available on Friday, Nov. 24. Ticket packages start at just $90 and the home schedule features match-ups against ranked USC, UCLA and Arizona.
Press Release courtesy of Sun Devil Athletics – Zach Wargo