Heat upset Timberwolves in shocking fashion

Alex Roth hit's two threes in the last 20 seconds to bury the Timberwolves. (Photo by Steve Shulhan)

Fourth year Heat point guard Alex Roth scored the final 6 points for the Heat, with two long threes in a span of 13 seconds to clinch the Heat’s come from behind 86-85 point win. The Heat used the three point shot as a weapon in their victory. As a team the Heat were on fire from beyond the arc shooting 11/19 for the game with Roth leading the way hitting on 5 of his 7 three point attempts.

The first quarter of the game did not start out the way the Heat would have liked. Head coach Darren Semeniuk as always prefers to control the game with defense, commenting, "we had to play against the high powered defending national champions UNBC Timberwolves in their gym. Plus, UNBC has the reigning player of the year in point guard Inderbir Gil. Last year when we played them in Prince George they beat us by 2 with Gil scoring 39 points. For us tonight the game would be won or lost on the defensive end." The Heat were not able to slow the defending champs down in the first quarter as UNBC jumped out to a 26-18 point lead. It could have been worse if shooting hero Alex Roth hadn’t foreshadowed the end of the game as he hit a three just before the buzzer at the end of the quarter.

Roth’s shot turned the Heat's fortunes around as they quickly erased the 8 point deficit with a 12-3 run to start the second quarter, forcing UNBC to call a timeout. The rest of the quarter both teams played the game very evenly, with the hot shooting of Alex Roth equalled by Timberwolves guard Matt Mills. Mills finished the half 4/8 from the three while Roth was 3/4. Both teams were even at the half with 42 points each.

Dan Briscoe attacke the Rim (Phot by Steve Shulhan)

In the third quarter the Heat were lead offensively by Dave Mackay, who scored 9 of his game high 22 points in the frame with Dan Briscoe dropping 8. Both teams continued to trade baskets until UNBC’s guard, #13 Robert Rodriguez, hit a half court shot at the buzzer to give UNBC back the lead 68-66.

The first 6 minutes of the fourth quarter saw the Heat establish a five point lead 80-75, only to see it evaporate to an 84-80 deficit with just 32 seconds left; this is when the heroics of Alex Roth took place. After a Heat timeout the ball found its way into Roth hands and he nailed a long three to cut the lead to just one with 20 seconds to play. The Heat quickly fouled Inderbir Gil on the inbounds. In the game Gil had been 9 for 9 from the charity stripe; he nailed the first one, but missed the second. The Heat rebounded and advanced the ball to Roth, who hit another three to put the Heat up 86-85 with 7 seconds to play. UNBC was unable to score in the final seconds as the Heat held on to upset the home town team. Coach Darren Semeniuk admitted the win felt great. “I’m extremely happy at how well our team was able to execute; we played one of the top teams in the country, to play as we did and in their gym, will make us set a new standard of play to live up to in the second half.”

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