Men’s basketball pulled off a 107-105 double-overtime victory against Richmond Wednesday after record-breaking performances from multiple Colonials combined with scorching 3-point shooting willed to the finish line.
The Colonials (6-5 A-10, 12-12) came into the game aiming to end a three-game losing streak against the Richmond Spiders (5-7 A-10, 12-13), who had lost four out of their last five games. The game went back-and-forth from start to finish and was characterized by lights-out shooting, as GW and Richmond both shot over 50 percent from the field.
GW was led by senior guard Brendan Adams, who torched up the Spiders for a career-high 35 points, 30 of which came in the second half and overtime. Adams hit nine 3-pointers on an out-of-this-world 75 percent from beyond the arc, breaking the GW record for most 3s by a single player in a game.
In addition to Adams’ career game, The Colonials got spectacular performances from senior guard James Bishop, who scored 33 points and recorded 10 assists, and senior forward Ricky Lindo Jr., who scored 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds. Freshman guard Maximus Edwards also turned in a double-double, scoring 11 points and pulling down 16 rebounds, 15 of which were defensive, tying a school record set in the 1986-87 season for most defensive rebounds in a game.
The Colonials started the game strong, recording multiple steals to start the game and moving the ball well on offense.
They led 12-10 at the first timeout five minutes into the game. Senior forward Hunter Dean scored 6 points on 3-3 shooting in this span.
The teams traded baskets throughout the first half, and Richmond capped off a 9-0 run with a 3 to go up 28-25 with just around four minutes left in the half.
Coming out of a pair of timeouts, Bishop went on a tear, scoring 8 points in the last four minutes alone, including a tough jump shot with just four seconds left in the half, pulling GW to within 2 at halftime 35-37. Bishop finished the first half with 10 points and four assists.
In the first half, GW hit 15-27 from the field, good for 55.6 percent, while the Spiders made 14-29. The Colonials outscored Richmond 24-10 in points in the paint, while Richmond out-shot GW from the 3-point line, hitting 6 of their 12 compared to GW’s anemic 2 out of 11.
GW put an offensive clinic in the second half, kicked off by an and-one Bishop layup off a nice bounce pass from Dean to give GW the lead, 38-37, just seconds into half.
The game soon became the Bishop and Adams show with Adams hitting two jump shots and a 3 before Bishop converted two more layups. Adams and Bishops scored the Colonials’ first 14 second-half points, putting GW up 52-45.
Richmond then went on an 8-0 run, retaking the lead 53-52 with 12:30 left in the half. Adams responded by hitting three straight 3s, scoring 9 points in the span of two minutes and putting GW up 61-57 with 10:30 left in regulation.
The Colonials extended their lead over the next several minutes. With 8:17 left to go in regulation, Adams hit his fifth 3-pointer of the half, scoring his 24 point off of a Bishop assist to put GW up 69-61.
A Lindo drive and layup made the score 71-64 with only 6:32 left to go in regulation, and the Colonials were able to force a shot-clock violation on the ensuing possession. Richmond responded by going on a 9-0 run, going up 75-71 with 2:31 left in the second half and holding a 5-point lead at 78-73 with just 1:07 to go.
Just when the game seemed out of reach, the Colonials stepped up and hit big shot after big shot to tie the game and send it to overtime. Edwards and Bishop both hit big 3s, and after Richmond hit a pair of free-throws to go up 82-79 with 25 seconds to go, Bishop brought up the ball and hit a clutch layup plus a foul that sent him to the line, where he sunk the free-throw to tie the game at 82-82.
“And then in the last play, it was like 20 seconds left,” Bishop said. “So I knew that I could still get in a quick two even if I didn’t get fouled, in my mind. I just shot it, get to the rim as quick as possible. And then he happened to foul me, that made it even better so I was able to get to the line.”
The Colonials maintained their offensive tenacity in overtime with Adams hitting his seventh 3-pointer of the night to put GW up 87-82 with 3:12 left in the first overtime. With just over two minutes to go, Adams tossed an alley-oop pass to Lindo who slammed it home and put the Colonials up 91-86.
Richmond countered with two 3s, interrupted by a Lindo free throw and just like that, the game was knotted back up at 92-92, sending the game to a second overtime.
GW offense stayed electric in the second overtime. Adams hit yet another 3, and Bishop drove to the basket and converted an and-one to start the period. Adams hit his ninth 3-pointer to put the Colonials up 101-94 with just under three minutes left.
“Yeah, I think obviously the big momentum play,” Adams said. “I can’t remember who passed me on but great pass. Was JB, I think. Great pass, the pass into the shot. I think he’s got us going, gives us a lot of momentum and sent us to the win.”
The Colonials were able to hold onto their lead this time, as Bishop hit a pair of free throws to ice the game and put them up 107-103 with five seconds left. GW ultimately emerged victorious with a final score of 107-105.
The Colonials relied heavily on Bishop and Adams to deliver key baskets down the stretch, which Head Coach Chris Caputo said was intentional.
“I think at that point in the game, we kind of went more back into middle pick and rolls with JB and BA,” Caputo said. “The idea for us was to mix it a little bit as we got down the stretch, not that we got to keep the ball in the hands of those guys. And so how do you do that as simply as possible? In those situations you think more about players than you think about plays.”
The Colonials hope to continue their momentum with a win against Saint Joseph Saturday in Philadelphia. Tipoff is slated for 1 p.m.
This article appeared in the February 9, 2023 issue of the Hatchet.