With just 1.6 seconds left, the No. 13 Grace College Lancers hit a three from the volleyball line, tying the game at 85-85.
However, Taylor senior guard Mason Degenkolb assured there would be no overtime.
With time expiring, Degenkolb threw up a prayer from three-quarters court and found twine, lifting Taylor to a stunning 88-85 upset of the Lancers in the Crossroads League Tournament Quarterfinals.
Degenkolb scored 17 of his team-high 23 points after halftime, shooting three-for-three from beyond the arc and eight-for-eight from the charity stripe.
Degenkolb helped to seal the Trojans’ win with seven points in the final 17 seconds, reaching the 20-point barrier for the fifth straight time and for the 40th time in his brilliant Taylor career. With his 23-point performance, Degenkolb surpassed David Wayne for fifth all-time on Taylor’ scoring charts.
The Trojans got off to a terrific start, scoring 48 points in the first half and leading by 13 at the halftime break. TU led by as many as 15 points in the second half, and their advantage remained in double figures until the 8:55 mark.
Grace came roaring back in the second half, however, shooting 61.3 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes. The Lancers cut the Trojans’ lead down to one on multiple occasions before finally tying the game with 1.6 ticks left.
But the Trojans were not phased, as Degenkolb, CJ Penha, and Ryan Robinson combined for seven critical free throws in the final 3:20, setting up for Degenkolb’s eventual game-winner.
Jason Hubbard finished the game with 21 points, nine rebounds, and two blocks, while Penha collected 19 points and six rebounds. Robinson added 17 points and three assists in Taylor’s triumph.
As a team, the Trojans shot 49.1 percent from the floor, including 43.8 percent from three-point range.