March 13, 2009

Courtesy of Central Oklahoma Athletics

CANYON, Texas - For the second straight year, Central Oklahoma was forced to overtime in the first round of the NCAA Division II South Central Regional. And for the second straight year, the Bronchos prevailed on a last-second shot.

Cristina Yarbrough made a driving layup with 2.1 seconds remaining to cap a game-ending 6-0 run that vaulted the No. 15-ranked Bronchos past Southeastern Oklahoma 68-66 here Friday afternoon in a thrilling back-and-forth contest.

UCO, which beat St. Mary’s 75-73 in OT on Karlie Free’s late bucket last year, won for a school-record 26th time in improving to 26-5 and moving into Saturday’s semifinals against the winner of the Washburn-Incarnate Word game.

The Savage Storm tied the game at 62-all and forced overtime on a layup with 3.5 seconds left in regulation and took a 66-62 lead in the extra session before UCO rallied.

Ashley Beckley blocked a SOSU shot that led to a fast-break and a foul on Yarbrough, who made both free throws to draw the Bronchos within 66-64. Rose Anderson rebounded a missed shot a minute later and went coast-to-coast to score the tying bucket with 50 seconds left.

Yarbrough then rebounded another SOSU miss with 25 seconds left and UCO called timeout. It was Yarbrough all the way on the inbounds as the junior guard dribbled off most of the clock before driving inside for the winning layup.