Men’s Hoop: Duncan Hoop Gives Cats Win Over Yale

Courtesy Vermont Sports Information

BURLINGTON – Vermont redshirt sophomore Ernie Duncan banked in the game-winning shot with one second left on the clock to give the Catamounts a 67-65 win over Yale on Saturday afternoon at Patrick Gym. Duncan’s decisive shot marked the third time in the last four games where the outcome was decided on the last possession for UVM.

Vermont improves to 6-2 on the year with its fourth victory in a week’s span. With the loss, Yale drops to 2-3 and its third straight loss after opening the season 2-0.

Duncan finished the game with nine points and a team-high six rebounds. Anthony Lamb led the Catamounts with 18 points, grabbed five rebounds, and set a new career-high with three blocks.Kurt Steidl posted double figures for the third straight game and fifth out of the last six overall with 11 points and sank three attempts from long range.

Miye Oni guided Yale with a game-high 19 points and eight rebounds. Sam Downey added 13 points and Blake Reynolds chipped in 11 points for the Bulldogs .

The Catamounts had their best shooting half of the season in the first half. UVM shot 69.2% (18-for-26) in the opening 20 minutes and tallied 24 points in the paint. Yale opened the game on a small 6-2 run but Vermont answered with a 13-2 run of its own to jump out to a 17-8 lead.

With 12:42 to go in the half, the Bulldogs climbed back into the game with a 14-2 run over the next 2:35 and tied the game at 20-20. The two teams kept the scoreboard close until the Cats pulled out in front with a 20-10 run in the final 6:15 of the opening half to take a 45-37 advantage into the locker room.

Each team struggled out of the gate in the second half but Vermont managed to get back on track. With 13:24 remaining, UVM produced an 11-2 run to build a 15-point margin, the largest lead of the game for either team.

Yale chipped away at the deficit over the next 6:54. Trailing 55-43, the Bulldogs came back to take the lead with a pair of free throws by Oni with 1:46 left in the game to cap off a 22-9 run.

The Catamounts hit a pair of free throws in the final minute to tie the game and came up with timely stop on the defensive end of the floor with 29 seconds to go to set up Duncan’s heroic shot. After a UVM timeout, Duncan held the ball at midcourt and let the clock wind down under five seconds. The redshirt sophomore dribbled off a screen to his right and worked his way by a pair of Yale defenders. He drove to the paint and banked a runner off the window for the go-ahead score with one second left on the clock. On the ensuing in-bounds play by Yale, Steidl deflected the pass to seal the victory for the Cats.

Vermont flips the calendar page into the month of December with a trip to Southeastern Conference (SEC) foe South Carolina on Thursday (Dec. 1) at 6:30 p.m.  The game will be televised live on the SEC Network.