Hurricanes Edge Oklahoma State To Stay Alive In NIT
March 15, 2006
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) – Robert Hite and Guillermo Diaz scored 15 points apiece and Miami survived a frantic late rally to beat Oklahoma State 62-59 in the National Invitation Tournament on Wednesday night.
The Hurricanes (17-15), who hosted a postseason game for the first time in school history, finished with a season-high 14 steals.
The Hurricanes led 28-20 at halftime and went ahead 46-32 after Hite hit a 3-pointer with 10:35 to play. Oklahoma State responded with an 18-8 surge, pulling within 54-50 when Mario Boggan converted one of two free throws with 2:27 remaining.
Boggan scored 16 points for the Cowboys (17-16), who dropped a first-round NIT game for the first time since 1956.
Miami then scored four points during a 15-second span, taking a 58-50 lead on a layup by Denis Clemente with 45 seconds remaining. But Byron Eaton responded by draining back-to-back 3-pointers and JamesOn Curry hit a 3 with 22.1 seconds left to cut it to 60-59.
Hite was fouled with 20 seconds left, but missed the front end of a one-and-one. Oklahoma State’s David Monds had a look at a wide open layup with 7 seconds remaining, but the shot rimmed out and bounced out of bounds.
Diaz converted a pair of free throws with 4.1 seconds left to give Miami a 62-59 lead, and Eaton misfired on a last-second 3-point attempt.
Miami advanced to the second round of the NIT for the first time since 1963. The Hurricanes will play the winner of Thursday’s game between Creighton (19-9) and Akron (23-9).