Devils Fall Short Following Spirited Comeback

A maroon and gold prayer was answered when the last second three-point shot by Kevin Kruger bounced in to force overtime. But in the extra period there would be no miracles, and when mental mistakes took over the visitors from Minneapolis were able to pull away and earn a hard fought 85-79 victory.

Points didn't come easy for ASU (4-1) in the opening moments of the game, but with Minnesota (4-2) struggling as well, both teams were tied at 14-14 at the 10:40 mark. Antwi Atuahene and Jeff Pendergraph helped the Devils maintain a slim lead, and send both teams to the locker rooms with a 32-30 AS edge.

The second stanza was another display of futile offense by the Sun Devils, and the Gophers took advantage to go on a 16-4 run and grab a 46-36 lead at the 12:55 mark. Minnesota didn't let up and recorded their largest margin, 53-40 with 8:46 left in the game. Some home fans started to exit the building, but those who stayed saw an ASU team refusing to lose. Ten points by Kevin Kruger spearheaded a 15-2 run to tie the score at 55 apiece with at the 4:37 mark. Minnesota fought back and were ahead 65-59 with 58 seconds left in the contest. Missed free throws by the Gophers keep the Sun Devils in the game, and allow Kruger's incredible basket to be one that sent the game to overtime.

In the extra period, inexplicit passes, players fouling out, four missed free throws by Allen Morill, all sealed the faith of the Sun Devils. The Gophers scored 19 points and made their long journey home a joyful one.

Kruger scored 24 of his career high 27 in the s second half and overtime. Atuahene had 11 points and a team-high six assists. Morill and Pendergraph had 10 points each, with the former grabbing a team-high nine boards.

Up next for the Sun Devils is a meeting with Utah Valley State at home, Saturday at 1 P.M.

Sun Devil Source Top Stories