Clark's Late Basket Lifts UW Men to Basketball Victory at Florida International
Dec. 16, 2000
MIAMI, Fla. - Senior forward Greg Clark hit a 17-foot jump shot with 3.2 seconds left in the game Saturday, lifting Washington to a 63-61 victory over Florida International at Golden Panther Arena.
Washington (4-3) stopped a two-game losing streak in its first outing on a four-game, 7,658-mile road trip.. Florida International (2-7) suffered its sixth straight loss.
The Huskies claimed their largest lead of the game at 57-49 on a layin by Clark with 5:39 remaining.
Carlos Arroyo scored 10 of his game-high 21 points during the final 5:15, sparking a 12-4 FIU run. Slavcho Slavtchev capped the surge with a 3-pointer at 0:37 that tied the game 61-61 and set up Clark's game-winning basket.
'With a one-second differential between the shot clock and game clock we were going to go down to seven seconds and initiate the play,' UWcoach Bob Bender described. 'The defense pinched down to cover our inside people, leaving Greg open coming off a screen. Greg made a really good decision, instead of just catching and shooting he shot faked and got a much better look at the shot and knocked it down.'
Clark, who hit 3-of-7 shots from the field, tallied all six of his points in the second half. It was the first game-winning shot in his collegiate career and likely his entire basketball career.
'It's the first time I can remember winning a game with a shot at the end,' said Clark. 'The final play was not designed to go to any one in particular. It just so happened that the ball ended up on my side at the end of the clock. I knew I had a few seconds left so I was able to shot fake once and take a dribble to get myself more room. That shot felt a lot better than those other jumpers that I was bricking before.'
Arroyo attempted a game-winning shot at the buzzer, but his 25-foot 3-point attempt glanced off the front rim.
Slavtchev finished with 17 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the field.
'I was real happy with how our team played tonight, especially Arroyo and Slavtchev,' said FIU coach Donnie Marsh. 'I would be more pleased if the score was reversed.'
The Panthers led for most of the first half, taking their biggest margin of 32-24 on a jumper by Arroyo with 2:41to play before halftime.
Washington closed the first half with a eight unanswered points, capped by a 3-pointer from Green that tied the score 32-32 going into intermission.
The Huskies travel to San Juan to participate in the Puerto Rico Holiday Classic from Dec. 20-22. They begin tournament play on Wednesday against host American University-Puerto Rico at 3:30 p.m. Pacific Time. Washington will play a second-round game against either Alabama or Northern Iowa. Also in the eight-team Puerto Rico Classic field are Cincinnati, Clemson, Florida Atlantic and Youngstown State.
The game in Miami was Washington's first after a 10-day break for final exams.
'This win was important in a lot of ways, both for the present and the future,' said Bender. 'Coming off a long break, combined with starting on the road and coming off two losses we needed to get a win. We need the momentum this win gives us going into a tournament setting. The big picture is that every win gives us confidence.'