New York • Less than a minute left and the Utes’ Five-foot-Eight senior level guard, Justin Bibbins, dribbled fearlessly into the paint on a ownership that held the prospective to switch the sport enormously.
As has been his addiction this season, the smallest participant at the flooring made an enormous play. Bibbins were given swarmed by means of a sea of our bodies apparently two times his measurement, however one way or the other nonetheless discovered a option to cross the ball out to Tyler Rawson at the wing.
Rawson made the go-ahead Three-pointer to present the Utah the lead with 38 seconds last, and 14 seconds later Bibbins drew a rate to seal the 69-64 win and this system’s first NIT championship sport look since 1974.
Bibbins, who performed all 40 mins, didn’t ranking in the primary quarter and nonetheless notched a team-high 19 issues (he went 12 of 12 on loose throws) and took control of the sport in the second half together with his decision-making.
“Late in the game, I just, you know, was trying to make a play,” Bibbins stated. “Coaches were telling me when I drove in the paint, people were open on the outside. I looked out and Ty was wide open, and I just tried to make the right play. I was happy he knocked it down.”
With Utes turnovers fueling Western Kentucky for a big portion of the sport — the Utes shot 18 fewer pictures than their combatants, in section because of 13 turnovers — Bibbins almost willed the Utes to victory in the fourth quarter. He scored or assisted on 14 of the crew’s 18 fourth-quarter issues, and all 8 of his issues got here on the free-throw line. The Utes made most effective two box targets in the fourth quarter, and each had been Three-pointers by means of Rawson off of feeds from Bibbins.
“We put Bibbs in those positions to make the right play, whether it’s to shoot it or find the open guy,” Rawson stated. “He had four or five guys on him there on the last play. It was a great job of him finding it.”