BAKERSFIELD, Calif.- South Dakota State missed three of their final four free throws opening the door just enough in the final seconds of the second overtime period and the CSUB Roadrunners found a way to walk through as Stephon Carter (Sr., Bakersfield, Calif., Garces HS)hit two free throws with .5 second remaining to give the 'Runners a 79-78 win over South Dakota State (21-8) at Rabobank Arena.
Following one of two made free throws by the Jackrabbits, Adam Young (Sr., Las Vegas, Nev., Barton CC) missed a three-point attempt to win the game, but Carter was pulled down from behind going for the loose ball by Chad White, putting the senior at the free throw line with just .5 remaining. Carter hit the first to tie the game at 78 before the Jackrabbits called their final timeout, he then hit his second free throw to give the 'Runners the upset win over one of the top teams in the Summit League.
"I kept telling myself he'll make it and he kept telling me 'coach I got it' and he stepped up," Barnes said. "Those were two crucial free throws and he felt like he had a play earlier with a chance to win the game and he didn't score it, so he felt like he was going to make up for it and he did; those were two big shots and a great play."
Carter led CSUB with 22 points but had just six at halftime and 11 in regulation before taking over the lead the way in the extra frames. CSUB shot just 17% in the first half but managed to trail by just 8 at 28-20. They opened the second half on a 20-run to take their first lead of the game, that opened the gates to 12 ties and 13 lead changes over the remainder of regulation and overtime. CSUB led by five in both overtime periods only to see South Dakota State battle back to the lead. The Jackrabbits had a chance to win at the end of the first overtime but White's layup bounced out as time expired.
"This is probably the biggest win against a team that's an NCAA Tournament team, a team that's playing well and had a lot of success and has a pro on their team in Nate Wolters," Barnes said. "For our guys to hang in there and fight and scratch and claw it ended up being a great win for us."
Nate Wolters, the third highest-scorer in the nation led South Dakota State with a game-high 32 points and 10 rebounds. Wolters missed two free throws with 51 seconds remaining and the game tied at 77.
CSUB managed to shoot 41% in the second half and 64% in the two overtimes while also converting 25-33 from the free throw line while the Jackrabbits were 12-21 from the stripe.
Brandon Barnes (R-Jr., Atlanta, Ga., Lipscomb) recorded his first career double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds, Barnes had tied the game at 77 with a layup under the basket the possession before Wolters' missed free throws. Barnes was also 7-12 from the field and 2-2 from beyond the arc while hitting 3-4 from the free-throw line.
CSUB played in back-to-back overtime games for the first time in program history following their 79-73 loss in overtime last week at UT Pan American. CSUB's last double overtime game came 14 years ago to the day when they won at UC Davis 86-83 on Feb. 20, 1999.
Young added 16 points for the 'Runners while Javonte Maynor (R-So., Atlanta, Ga., Georgia State) added 15 for CSUB in the win that split the season series with the Jackrabbits while also finishing the year 2-1 against programs out of the Summit League. CSUB also defeated Nebraska-Omaha on Jan. 19 in Bakersfield.
The Roadrunners will conclude the home portion of their schedule hosting Pacifica University Saturday night at the Icardo Center. Seniors Tyrone White, Adam Young and Stephon Carter will all be honored before the game as part of Senior Night. Tipoff is scheduled for 6 P.M.
Tickets are available online at GoRunners.com or by calling 654-BLUE. CSUB Faculty, staff and alumni can purchase tickets at the door for just $2.