Clarksville, Ark.-McMurry erased a 40-38 halftime deficit and escaped with a 82-79 win over the Eagles in American Southwest Conference play Monday night.
Ozarks (5-6, 3-3) forced 11 first half turnovers and canned seven three-pointers to maintain the lead for most of the first half. Ozarks went ahead early, 10-5, on a Tony Daniels three-pointer and five minutes later reeled off a 17-0 run. Daniels layup at the 9:50 mark started the push, which saw Ozarks hold a 35-22 advantage with under four minutes left. McMurry (6-4, 5-1), however, finished the half strong to climb within two points at intermission.
The Eagles extended their lead to 52-45 on a Chris Williams basket with 14:36 remaining in the game, but McMurry fought back to tie the contest three minutes later. The game saw three more ties, with the latter coming on a Tony Brock steal and layup with 1:06 left. McMurry answered with a quick shot to take back the lead. Ozarks missed a three-pointer on its next possession and got the rebound, but couldn’t convert on a second three-point attempt. McMurry went to the free throw line with 11 seconds left and nailed both to make it 81-77. Blake Mitchem scored with 2.2 seconds, but McMurry converted one of two free throws in the final moments to seal the game.
Jeremy Clark led the team with 18 points. Daniels and Williams each had 16. Brock finished with 12 points. Daniels had 8 rebounds and Brock had 8 assists.
Ozarks will host Schreiner University January 8 and Texas Lutheran University January 10.