COLUMBIA, Md. – It was a classic, but the Northern Virginia Community College came up just a hair shy, as Howard downed the Nighthawks 115-110 in overtime Monday evening in NJCAA Region 20 Division II action.
NOVA falls under .500 at 6-7 and returns to the floor Thursday against Anne Arundel inside Ernst Gymnasium. The game will be broadcast live on Facebook.com/NOVANighthawks and reaired across the DMV Sunday – check your local listening.
The Nighthawks struggled to get things going early as they were down 10-2, but found their stroke and trailed by four moments later. The Nighthawks couldn't keep things going, as a four-point deficit turned into 16 (25-9) midway through the first half.
NOVA though fought back and used a 27-9 run to take its first lead of the game at 36-34 with less than five minutes left in the opening stanza.
Later in the first half, the Nighthawks were able to build a small lead, but were not able capitalize as they took a 49-48 advantage into the locker room.
Early into the second period, NOVA looked as though it would run away with the game as it grabbed a 59-48 lead. Howard was able to get within six, but the Nighthawks regrouped and built their advantage back to 11.
After NOVA led 69-58, the Dragons used a 15-3 swing and took their first lead since late in the first half. The Nighthawks quickly found their shot again and went back up by eight after a Tavaris James jumper.
The rest of the contest went back and forth with the Nighthawks taking their last lead with a minute remaining following another James bucket. For the game, James finished with a game-high 31 points.
With six seconds left, Howard hit a pair of free throws to go up 96-94. Then with the clock ticking down James, who had 10 assists Monday night, found Drew Jackson down low to send the game into overtime.
In the overtime period, NOVA missed four straight shots and then turned the ball over and Howard was able to jump on the opportunity as it led 100-96.
The Dragons would later lead 111-103, but the Nighthawks were never able to get any closer than three, which came with 10 ticks left.