The Missouri State men’s basketball team lost to Drake 71-69 on a last-second shot in the second round of Arch Madness, ending the Bears' season.
Drake jumped out to a 6-0 lead less than two minutes into the game. The Bears battled back to a 11-10 lead, but a series of missed shots in the paint by the Bears gave Drake a 24-19 lead at the eight minute mark of the first half.
The two teams traded three-pointers and buckets in the paint for the rest of the half and Drake went into the break with a 40-37 lead, but MSU finished the half on a 14-7 run.
Junior guard Keaton Hervey led MSU with 14 first-half points, six of which came on big threes in the final minutes of the half.
Junior center Nic Tata, who barely played in the later eight games of MSU’s conference schedule, had six points in the first half with senior forward Gaige Prim on the bench.
The second half was as close as the end of the first. MSU went on a 7-0 run to open the half, but Drake stabilized coming out of a media timeout and led 50-48 with 14 minutes left in the game.
The game was tight all the way to the buzzer, and a shot by Drake sophomore Joseph Yesufu with two and a half seconds left gave Drake a 71-69 win.
Prim and Hervey led the Bears with 19 and 18 points respectively. Sharp had 16.
"It's devastating going out that way," Hervey said. "Definitely not what we envisioned. But at the end of the day we've got a close group and we'll find a way through this."
Despite the loss, head coach Dana Ford said he was proud of how the season went.
"It's a season of gratefulness," Ford said. "I'm grateful for the group we have, grateful to play, grateful for the opportunities and the growth."
With the loss MSU’s season is likely over, finishing with a record 17-7. Ford said the Bears may try to schedule a game before the NCAA tournament, but no talks have happened yet.
Follow Stephen Terrill on Twitter, @stevethe2nd
Subscribe to The Standard's free weekly newsletter here.