McLaughlin Sinks Game-Winner to Upend Alaska Anchorage, 79-78 - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

McLaughlin Sinks Game-Winner to Upend Alaska Anchorage, 79-78

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From CWU Athletics

LACEY, Wash. (Mar. 7) -- Central Washington University junior Mark McLaughlin (Bothell, Wash./Inglemoor HS) caught an inbound pass with 2.8 seconds left and sank a game-winning three-point basket as time expired lifting the Wildcats to a thrilling 79-78 victory over the University of Alaska Anchorage in the quarterfinals of the 2013 Great Northwest Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Tournament at Marcus Pavilion on the Saint Martin's University campus.

McLaughlin led all scorers with a GNAC tournament-record 32 points, 26 of which came in the second half when the Wildcats (15-12) erased an 18-point deficit.

After trailing 44-26 at halftime, the Wildcats torched the nets in the second half, shooting better than 65 percent and connecting on 5 of 9 three-point attempts to outscore Alaska Anchorage 53-34 in the period. 

CWU tied the game twice in the final two minutes of the contest. With the game tied at 76-76, UAA guard Jalen Little made a layup with just less than four seconds remaining. The Seawolves intercepted the Wildcats' inbounds pass near mid-court but fumbled the ball out of bounds with 2.8 seconds on the clock. Junior Kevin Davis (Federal Way, Wash./Todd Beamer HS) then took the side out and found McLaughlin rolling off a teammate's screen and launched the game deciding three-point basket over the outstretched arms of two Seawolf defenders to send the Wildcat faithful into pandemonium and into the tournament semifinals.

Also scoring in double-figures for the Wildcats were junior Nate Walker (Tacoma, Wash./Henry Foss HS) with 13 points and senior Jordan Coby (Tacoma, Wash./Woodrow Wilson HS) with 11.

Six Alaska Anchorage players scored in double figures, led by Liam Gibcus' 18 points on 9 of 14 shooting.

The Wildcats extend their season with the victory, and will face number three nationally-ranked (and the tournament's second seed), Seattle Pacific University, in a 5:15 p.m. semifinal on Friday (Mar. 8) at Marcus Pavilion.

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