PLAINVIEW, Texas — Matt Garnett knew the St. Gregory's University Cavaliers were better than their record, and they proved it on Saturday afternoon in Hutcherson Center. Garnett's Wayland Baptist Pioneers also proved something, however: They still have a little something to say in the Sooner Athletic Conference race.
Juhreece Thompson had a double-double with 25 points and 13 rebounds, and four of his teammates also scored in double figures as Wayland used overtime to defeat upset-minded St. Greg's, 85-79.
“We needed a win,” Garnett said. “This was one of those games where our resiliency and our toughness were going to be tested, and our guys really answered the call.”
The victory ended a three-game losing skid for the Pioneers (14-11, 5-7 SAC) while the Cavaliers (6-15, 0-11) remained winless in conference play. SGU has dropped 13 games in a row, including all nine of its road outings.
Garnett called the game a “gut check” for the Pioneers, who were coming off a 69-48 loss to No. 10 Oklahoma Baptist on Thursday when Wayland scored its fewest points in Garnett's two seasons here.
“These last two weeks have been a big test to their commitment and their character,” Garnett said of his players. “Sometimes when you get on a losing streak you can lose perspective, so a win settles you down and makes you remember and recommit to the process. Whether you're on a winning streak or a losing streak, you can't get caught up in the big picture too much. No matter the situation, we just have to keep focusing on us and be excited to be here and excited to have the chance to get better.”
Regulation ended with the scored tied at 70 after St. Greg's Brock Vorwald hit his first 3-pointer of the game following five misses from the top of the key with seven seconds left. The teams traded turnovers after that and neither side got off a shot, forcing overtime.