Former Chipola Guard Leads Troy
January 4, 2008
By Drew Champlin (Dothan Eagle)
TROY — Troy head coach Don Maestri showed his team some rebounding statistics prior to Thursday’s game with North Texas — ones that had Troy deep in last place in the league in rebounding margin.
It was meant as a challenge for the forwards. The whole Trojan team took it in stride.
The Trojans outrebounded a bigger and more physical North Texas team by 11 and overcame late-game adversity to snap a two-game losing streak and beat the Mean Green 91-88 in overtime at Trojan Arena.
North Texas (9-4, 0-2 Sun Belt) came into the game leading the league in rebounding margin.
“You can’t play a team like North Texas and not put everything into it and expect to win,” Maestri said.
Late adversity in regulation almost cost the Trojans (7-6, 1-2). With Troy holding a 6-point lead with 48 seconds left, Trojan guard Michael Vogler was jostling for position with a UNT player as he chased a loose ball.
Referee Pat Adams whistled a foul on Vogler — much to the dismay of everyone cheering for Troy.
UNT’s Dez Willingham hit a three, and after Vogler missed the front end of a 1-and-1 at the free throw line, UNT’s Collin Dennis hit a 3-pointer to send the game to overtime.
“I thought I had him boxed out and he climbed over my back and (Adams) called it on me,” Vogler said. “(Adams) said ‘You were holding him and he was holding you.’ In that case, I thought I had position.”
“(Adams) told me to watch the film and tell him what I thought.”
Vogler admitted the call stuck in his mind longer than he wanted to. It stuck in Troy’s mind, as UNT held a 7-point lead with 2:20 left in overtime.
Then, Tom Jervis hit two free throws, O’Darien Bassett sunk a 3-pointer and Bassett hit two free throws to tie it with 1:35 left.
Vogler got a steal on the inbounds as Troy put in full court pressure, but missed the shot under the goal. Bassett got the rebound, and his free throws with 1:32 left gave Troy a 2-point lead.
UNT’s Keith Wooden then got a dunk, but Bassett hit two free throws with 36 seconds left to give Troy the lead for good.
UNT’s Josh White tried to lean into Bassett on a 3-point attempt and draw a foul, but no foul was called and White’s shot airballed out of bounds.
Bassett hit 1 of 2 free throws with less than a second left to ice the win.
“Two minutes and 30 seconds is a lot of basketball for run and gun,” Bassett said. “We knew we could put up a lot of points; we just had to keep playing hard.”
He finished with 30 points. Vogler, a 6-foot point guard, finished with 11 points, eight assists and seven rebounds.
“I learned from (the call),” Vogler said. “My head was out of it, but (Bassett) picked us up.”
Kenny Ware was an unsung hero, as the 6-foot-5, 170-pound forward came off the bench and grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds with his four points. Trayce Macon scored 14 and pulled down eight rebounds.
White led UNT with 18 points. Willingham and Quincy Williams each scored 15, and Wooden scored 12 with 12 rebounds.
Troy forced 18 turnovers and outscored UNT in the paint 44-43. The Mean green led 46-39 at halftime.
The Trojans step out of league play and host Utah Valley State Saturday at 7 p.m.