Rutgers Prevails in Overtime 78-68

With 30 seconds remaining in regulation of the DePaul versus Rutgers men's basketball game, Jon Bon Jovi's "Livin on a Prayer" blared over the loudspeakers at Allstate Arena in Rosemont. With Rutgers leading 58-57, both teams had to be saying their prayers during the timeout of the nailbiter. Blue Demons junior guard Sammy Mejia hit one of two free throws to tie the game and send it to overtime.

As a New Jersey native, Bon Jovi would be pleased that the Jersey school held on in the overtime period to prevail 78-68.

Rutgers got out to a quick start in this game and led by as much as fourteen in the first half. DePaul fought back to get within 33-25 at halftime. The Blue Demons actually never led in the battle.

DePaul played like comeback kids going on a 8-0 run to end the second half to force the overtime period. The Blue Demons held Rutgers scoreless over the final four minutes of the second half.

The extra period was all Rutgers as the Scarlet Knights outscored DePaul 20-10. Rutgers was not going to be denied after suffering a home overtime loss to Villanova earlier in the week. "We went in to overtime and kept our composure," said Rutgers coach Gary Waters. "They went in there, in the huddle, each and every one of them said 'we're winning this one'."

Rutgers had four players finish in double figures as guard Quincy Douby racked up 20, guard Marquis Webb scored 13, while J.R. Inman and Anthony Farmer contributed 11 apiece.

Draelon Burns led all scorers with a career high 24 points. Sammy Mejia contributed 11 points and 10 rebounds and freshman Wilson Chandler scored 10 before fouling out in overtime. Mejia had the responsibility of guarding RU's leading scorer Douby. Chasing Douby all over the court impacted his offensive game. "Obviously it had an effect on me," said Mejia. "The type of offense that they ran had him running off of a bunch of screens. It definitely took a toll on me after awhile."

Waters complimented the Blue Demons' performance. "I got to give DePaul a great, great deal of credit," said Waters. "They could've backed down at points in that game. They kept fighting and fighting."

"I think we've been beaten a couple of times in the last couple weeks, but I hadn't thought we lost," said DePaul coach Jerry Wainwright. "I thought we lost today. It wasn't so much what they did, it was what we didn't do. That's very disappointing."

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