Mott has had some tussles over the years on the road against Delta College (8-12). It’s rarely been easy for the Bears in Pioneer country, but they always seem to come away with a win.
A similar storyline played out Wednesday night, albeit with even more drama. The Bears overcame a 4-point deficit in the final 90 seconds to hold on to win, 63-62.
After sophomore Malik Albert made a pair of free throws, Delta had the ball and a chance to win the game with 11 seconds left in regulation. The Pioneers’ Caleb McIntosh failed to convert and Mott’s Myles Busby swept away the rebound to secure the win.
“I’ve been doing this a long time; sometimes you get outplayed and you still find a way to win a game,” said Mott head coach Steve Schmidt on the Michigan Regional Sports Network. “We made a lot of unforced errors, but I’ll take it. It feels good to win, but we could have just as easily left here with a loss.”
At one point midway through the second half, the Bears were down nine points and in danger of frittering away any chance of winning the MCCAA’s Eastern Conference. They fought back to tie the game with four minutes to go, but trailed by four in the final 90 seconds before Albert, the frontrunner for Player of the Year in the MCCAA, went on a 5-0 run by himself to put Mott up one.
Mott played with a sense of urgency in the final two minutes, holding the Pioneers scoreless.
Tre Johnson led all scorers for Delta with 24 points.
Albert had 15 points for Mott (16-4), 10 below his average. Ruston Hayward and Marcus Johnson, both freshmen, added 12 points apiece.
Tre Johnson led Delta with 24.
The Bears should have another chance to redeem themselves from their most recent uninspiring trip to Delta, as the Pioneers will host the district tournament in March.
Mott returns to action at 3 p.m. Saturday at home versus Henry Ford. Listen live on MRSN.us.