Weatherford's Layup Pushes Eagles Past Howard Payne In Thriller

The Eagles celebrate following a thrilling win over Howard Payne.

University of the Ozarks 62, Howard Payne University 60
Records: University of the Ozarks (6-6, 4-1 ASC), Howard Payne (4-10, 1-5 ASC)
Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019
Clarksville, Ark. | Mabee Gymnasium

The Eagles pulled out a thrilling 62-60 win over Howard Payne University behind a Hannah Weatherford layup with five seconds remaining Thursday night in American Southwest Conference play. The Eagles now move to 4-1 in the conference. With the score tied 60-60 with 12 seconds left in the game, Savannah Kate Smith dribbled past halfcourt and made an outstanding move past a pair of defenders to find a wide open Weatherford heading to the basket. Weatherford delivered the shot and then the Eagles made a defensive stop to secure the game. Defensively, the Eagles kept Howard Payne scoreless in the final 2:31 of the game. The team statistics were similar as the Eagles shot 44 percent from the field. Howard Payne hit 43 percent. The Eagles made 36 percent from the three-point line, while Howard Payne hit 33 percent. And at the free throw line, the Eagles hit 60 percent, while Howard Payne hit 62 percent. Hailey Ostrander hit two three-pointers during the final six minutes and Weatherford made a three and the game-winning bucket. Ostrander finished with 17 points behind four three-pointers. Weatherford made three from long-distance and had 13 points in the game.

"We didn't play our best basketball tonight, but we never gave up and competed until the final buzzer. We battled hard and made big plays down the stretch, including a key three-pointer to tie the game and then a fast break layup near the end. I am proud of our effort tonight and the fact that we found a way to win."

Scoring - Hailey Ostrander (17)
Rebounding - Delanei Stephens (10)
Assists - Delanei Stephens, Kamryn McKinney, Savannah Kate Smith (4)

The Eagles outscored Howard Payne 15-7 in the final six minutes of the game. Hailey Ostrander hit two three-pointers during that stretch and Hannah Weatherford made a three-pointer and the game-winning basket.

The Eagles move to 4-1 in conference play, the program's best start since the 2005-2006 season.

Hailey OstranderKamryn McKinneySavannah Kate SmithDelanei Stephens, Hannah Weatherford

The Eagles will host Sul Ross State University January 5.