HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, Va. -- It was "Senior Night" at Hampden-Sydney College on Wednesday and it was a senior who helped put the final touches on a thrilling victory on the basketball court at the Kirby Fieldhouse. But, it was a Virginia Wesleyan College senior who took the spotlight in the final seconds.
Chris Teasley (Newport News/Menchville)hit a jumper with seven seconds remaining to lift the visiting Marlins to a 78-77 win in a showdown between the top two ranked teams in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference.
The Tigers, who entered the game ranked No. 1 in the South Region, had the last shot to win the game, but an attempt by Khobi Williamson (Norfolk/Maury) missed the mark as the final buzzer sounded. Virginia Wesleyan, ranked No. 4 in the South Region, improved to 18-6 overall and to 13-2 in the ODAC, while H-SC, ranked No. 11 nationally, dropped to 21-3 and 13-2.
The victory was VWC's second in nine days over a top 20 ranked team. The Marlins defeated then No. 16 Christopher Newport, at CNU, 79-66.
A crowd of 2,025 witnessed a definite turn of momentum in the second half after Hampden-Sydney opened up a 51-39 lead with 15:28 remaining in the game.
VWC junior DJ Woodmore (Virginia Beach/Landstown)started the momentum shift to the Marlins with a pair of free throws. In the next seven minutes Virginia Wesleyan stunned the Tigers and the partisan crowd with a 27-5 run that gave the Marlins a 66-56 lead with 8:41 on the clock. While VWC hit 8-of-12 shots in the run, including three triples, H-SC managed only six shots and hit just one. The Tigers turned the ball over four times and committed fouls that put Virginia Wesleyan on the foul line nine times.
The Marlins hit eight. Woodmore led the overall run with nine points and standout rookie Sedric Nady (Chicago, Ill./Virginia Beach Landstown) added seven points. But, H-SC was far from finished.
The Tigers put together a 14-3 run to move in front 70-69 lead with 4:34 remaining to be played. Harrison George (Raleigh, N.C./Leesville Road) scored five points in the surge, but it was Keegan Wetzel (Mebane, N.C./Eastern Alamance) who nailed a triple to give the host team the lead...temporarily. Nady, who hit a couple key triples in Virginia Wesleyan's big run, nailed his most important trey of the night with 4:19 on the clock to return the lead to the Marlins at 72-70.
VWC stayed in front through the final minutes until Mike Murray (Norfolk/Norfolk Christian) came through with a triple to push H-SC back in front at 77-76 with 35 seconds on the clock. Virginia Wesleyan called a time out to talk about the final seconds and as the clock moved under 10 seconds to play, Teasley fired his game-winner to evoke a roar from the Virginia Wesleyan contingent that made the trip to H-SC for the game.
Woodmore led Virginia Wesleyan scoring with17 points, hitting 7-of-7 from the free throw lines. Teasley and Nady added 13 points each.
Teasley connected on 5-of-8 field goal attempts overall and Nady led the Marlins with three triples made in six attempts. VWC hit nine treys overall, while H-SC connected on four. Senior Tre' Ford (Falls Church/J.E.B. Stuart) recorded a game-high six assists.
Woodmore led VWC rebounding with six. Both teams pulled down 33 rebounds, with Williamson pulling in a game-high nine for the Tigers. He also scored 18 points, hitting on 8-of-10 field goal attempts.
George connected on 10-of-18 shots and finished with 24 points. Virginia Wesleyan closes its regular season in the Jane P. Batten Student Center on Saturday, Feb. 16, hosting the Hornets of Lynchburg College at 2 p.m.