Patriot buzzer-beater wins game against Crusaders


Photo by: Ainara Eizaguirre Irastorza

Senior guard, Alex Cox, smiles to the stands after scoring a point.

After a close match against North Grenville University Crusaders, the Patriots prevailed with a buzzer-beater three-pointer shot by senior guard, Alex Cox. 

“Having nine assists is hard to do, but I had confidence my teammates would knock down my passes,” Cox said. “My teammates returned the favor at the end of the game by believing in me to hit the game-winner, and hitting the game-winning three-pointer topped off an incredible performance from the team.” 

Several of the basketball players shined during the game. Freshman forward, Jonah Pierce, posted 26 points (a career-high) and eight rebounds. Pierce also made all 12 of his field-goal attempts, a feat that has not been seen in 41 years. Cox put up 17 points and nine assists, followed by junior guard, Tionne Rollins, with 15 points. Freshman forward, Nick Silva, posted 12 points, and freshman guard, Jose Benitez, posted 11 points.

With five Patriots leading the charge, the Crusaders had to fight for their close match. Though the Crusaders kept the lead in the first half and heading into the second half—an 11-point lead at the maximum—the Patriots fought back to earn a nine-point lead in the second.

After much back and forth, Pierce bought a lead with a dunk followed by a free throw, 92-90. However, with 31 seconds left, the Crusaders tied the game 92-92 with free throws. The Patriots took possession of the ball and passed it off to Cox for the buzzer-beating game-winner to finish off the close match.

“I felt like the team played very well,” Cox said. “We were passing the ball extremely well and sharing it. No one was being selfish, and everyone was contributing.”

The Patriots went into the game with the intention to win, needing to secure a spot in the conference tournament. After a few losing streaks earlier in the season, the Patriots have been fighting for their spot within the conference. 

“We knew we needed to win both games during the weekend to seal a birth in the conference tournament, so winning the first game helped our chances a lot,” Cox said. “Now it’s just playing for a better seed in the tournament.”

The Patriots will play their last regular-season game against the University of Mount Olive at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 24, in the Smith University Center. After that home game, the Patriots will advance into the post-season conference tournament. You can find the scheduling information at: