OSWEGO, N.Y. – Eastern Connecticut State’s Brian Salzillo didn’t miss a shot all night, but it was his final basket with 2.7 seconds left in the second overtime which gave the Warriors a 70-69 double overtime victory against Oswego State in the second round of the NCAA tournament on Saturday.
Salzillo drilled his third 3-pointer of the game from the top of the key to vault the Warriors into the round of 16 next weekend. The Warriors (24-5) will face Cabrini (28-1), which played to overtime on Saturday to eliminate Hobart 90-88.
After giving up the tying basket at the buzzer, ending regulation and giving away a five-point lead with one minute left in the first overtime, Eastern erased a three-point deficit with 31.8 seconds left in the second overtime to hand Oswego (26-4) its first loss after 17 consecutive wins and its first loss in 18 home games this year.
Oswego’s Sean Michele, the nation’s leading free-throw shooter, missed the second of two free throws with 12.1 seconds left that kept Eastern within two points at 69-67. Eastern then went the length of the floor and got the ball in the hands of Salzillo, who swished the game-winning 3-pointer with 2.5 seconds left. After a timeout, Oswego quickly got the ball in the front court and got a good look from the right side, but a potential game-winning 3-pointer fell short of the iron.
Salzillo led Eastern with 15 points, going 5-for-5 from the floor (3-for-3 from 3-point range) and 2-for-2 from the line. Senior guard Nick Nedwick and junior forward Chris Robitaille each had 14 points and senior forward Hamilton Levy added 10. Robitaille had 10 rebounds and Nedwick five assists.