NEWARK, NJ–On Thursday night, GMC Hoops took in some college basketball action with the 2016 CIT Quarterfinal game between NJIT and UT-Arlington. After scoring the first points of the game, NJIT fell behind as the Mavericks of UT-Arlington scored 13 unanswered points for a 13-2 lead. Then, East Brunswick’s Rob Ukawuba got things going for the Highlanders with a three pointer from the right wing. NJIT then chipped away at the lead and only trailed 30-26 at the intermission.
The Highlanders then opened the second half by scoring 6 of the first 8 points to tie the game twice, and after a UT-Arlington score put the Mavericks up 34-32, Ukawuba struck again for a three from the right side to give NJIT its first lead of the game since 2-0 at 35-34. Former Union Catholic standout, Damon Lynn followed with a three of his own for a 38-34 edge. UT-Arlington would tie the game twice at 47-47 and 50-50 before taking its last lead of the game at 51-50.
However, NJIT quickly responded with a decisive 8-0 run that included threes by Ky Howard and Lynn for a 58-51 lead, and led 60-53 before, UT-Arlington rallied with 7 of the next 8 points to pull within one with under a minute to play. Howard then made both ends of the bonus and the Mavericks last second shot attempt to tie was off the mark as NJIT won, 63-60 to advance to the CIT Semifinals for the 2nd straight year.
Ukawuba finished with 10 points on two threes, a field goal, and 2 of 3 from the foul line. He also collected 5 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal. Howard led 4 different Highlanders in double figures with 14 points while Coleman added 12, and Lynn chipped in with 11. Drew Charles led UT-Arlington with 14.
13:52 left in the first half and NJIT calls time after UT-Arlington scores here for an 11-2 lead.
12:00–UT-Arlington adds another score for a 13-0 tear and a 13-2 lead.
7:30 left in the first half and NJIT waking up with a 9-4 run sparked by a trey from the right wing by EB’s Rob Ukawuba to close the gap to 17-11.
2:54 left in first half and NJIT hanging in thanks to a Tim Coleman three from the right wing that closed the gap to 26-20.
54.4 seconds left in first half and UT-Arlington calls time after a Ky Howard three closes gap to 30-23.
0:00–End of the first half and NJIT pulls to within four at 30-26 on a three pointer by Chris Jenkins. NJIT has more three pointers (6) than 2 pt field goals (2). EB’s Rob Ukawuba has 7 points on a three, a FG, and 2-3 FTs.
16:53 left in regulation and NJIT has taken a 38-34 lead after 12-4 start to half including treys by Rob Ukawuba and Damon Lynn.
10:50 remaining in regulation and NJIT clinging to a 45-44 lead on a Tim Coleman layup.
7:49 left in regulation and NJIT has taken a 50-47 lead in this Damon Lynn trey from the right side.
5:33 left in regulation and NJIT takes a 53-51 lead on a Ky Howard trey from the right side of the key off a kick out by Rob Ukawuba.
3:33 left in regulation and NJIT now up 56-51 after Damon Lynn hits Highlanders 11th trey of the game.
2:33 left in regulation and NJIT leads 58-53 after a goaltending call on a block by NJIT’s Tim Coleman.
1:25 left in regulation and UT-Arlington pulls within 4 at 60-56 on this trey.
0:00–NJIT HANGS ON! Highlanders earn 2nd straight CIT Semifinals berth with a 63-60 win over UT-Arlington. Last second three attempt by Charles off the mark as time expires. There were 4 lead changes and 5 ties in the contest while neither team had a lead bigger than 11 points. NJIT had 11 threes and enjoyed a 33-18 margin in points scored from beyond the arc. NJIT improves to 20-14 on the season and will play Columbia in the semis on Sunday. UT-Arlington concludes its season at 24-11.