In a microcosm of the 2012-13 season, Seattle University had its chances to win Saturday night, but could not close the deal as the UT Arlington Mavericks came away with a 65-63 victory in Western Athletic Conference men's basketball action at KeyArena.
Seattle U was ahead at halftime, 31-26, and maintained that lead through the first part of the second half, with an alley-oop dunk by Deshaun Sunderhaus (Conyers, Ga.) off an assist from Chad Rasmussen (University Place, Wash.) putting the Redhawks ahead, 49-44, with 10:04 remaining in the second half. UT Arlington scored six unanswered points over the next minute, taking a one-point lead on a layup by Greg Gainey.
The lead seesawed back-and-forth until a layup by Jamel Outler put the Mavericks ahead, and after three missed shots by the Redhawks, Cameron Catlett made a layup to increase UTA's lead to 56-53. Sunderhaus scored the next four Seattle U points, but he fouled out with 3:33 remaining in regulation, and the two teams traded points for the next two minutes.
As the second half entered the final minute, Rasmussen hit a three-pointer to tie the game at 62-62, and Clarence Trent (Tacoma, Wash.) was fouled pulling down the rebound after a missed Maverick shot. He made one of two free throws to give Seattle U a 63-62 advantage, but Jordan Reves was fouled grabbing an offensive rebound with 12 seconds left, and he made both free throws to give UT Arlington the lead, 64-63.
On the Redhawks' next possession, Trent drove the lane, but his layup attempt bounced off the rim, and the ball went out of bounds off a Redhawk player. After being fouled with 1.3 seconds left, UTA's Kevin Butler made the first free throw, but missing the second attempt actually helped the Mavericks, as the Redhawks ran out of time trying to pull down the rebound and moving the ball upcourt for one final shot.
UT Arlington (14-9, 9-5 WAC) scored the first six points of the game on back-to-back three-pointers by Butler and Karol Gruszecki. Seattle U responded with a 17-1 scoring run over a six-minute span, with Jarell Flora (Bremerton, Wash.) scoring the final 11 Redhawk points of the run with three consecutive three-pointers and a dunk to make the score 21-11 with 8:31 remaining in the first half.
The Mavericks would score the next six points, four of them by Brandon Edwards, to cut their deficit to four. Rasmussen would twice give Seattle U a nine-point lead late in the first half, but UT Arlington fought back to close the Redhawk lead to five heading into the locker room at halftime.
Flora shot 7-of-9 from the field to finish with a career-high 18 points, while Sunderhaus earned 13 points, seven rebounds, and two steals. For the game, Seattle U shot 39.3 percent (22-of-56) from the field, including 5-of-18 from behind the three-point line, and 73.7 percent (14-of-19) from the free throw line.
Despite shooting just 4-of-15 from the field, Butler ended up as the Mavericks' leading scorer with 14 points. Edwards was a perfect 6-of-6 from the field as he notched a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds, as did Reves with 11 points and 11 rebounds, plus he collected four steals. UT Arlington shot 35.6 percent (21-of-59) from the field, including 5-of-21 from behind the three-point line, and 60 percent (18-of-30) from the free throw line.
The Redhawks won the rebounding battle, 44-40, and committed only 14 turnovers, but the Mavericks committed only 10 turnovers during the game.
Before the game, Senior Night ceremonies were held honoring T.J. Diop (Queensland, Australia), Louis Green (Westchester, Ill.), Prince Obasi (Reseda, Calif.), Rasmussen, and Allen Tate (Hobbs, N.M.). The five seniors made up Seattle U's starting lineup for the final home game of the 2012-13 season.
Seattle University (7-18, 2-13 WAC) will not play again until Thursday, Feb. 28, at Texas State at 7 p.m. local time. Dave Grosby and Gary Hill Jr. will broadcast the game live on 770 AM KTTH, starting with the pregame show at 4:45 p.m. Pacific time.