DePaul Ends Streak with Golden Win

DePaul ended their 24 game regular season Big East losing streak in dramatic fashion tonight as Mike Stovall sank the game-winner with 0.7 seconds remaining on the game clock to defeat Marquette 51-50.

It was a fantastic finish for DePaul (8-10, 1-5), as they got their first win under interim coach Tracy Webster.

The Blue Demons were trailing 50-46 with 20 seconds to play and Marquette (11-7, 2-4) in possession of the ball when Devin Hill fouled Lorenzo Hayward. Hayward missed the front end of a 1-and-1, allowing Mike Stovall to bury a three pointer to pull within one at 50-49 with 9.7 seconds left.

"I felt like I got a good pick from Krys Faber and I just felt like I could knock the shot down," Stovall said.

Marquette's David Cubillan then also missed a free throw giving Stovall the opportunity to nail an off-balance 18 foot jumpshot to seal the win for the Blue Demons.

"It seemed like I saw it in slow-motion," said Marquette coach Buzz Williams. "He made a great shot."

Stovall's shot brought a huge smile to the face of DePaul legend Mark Aguirre, who was sitting courtside.

"I just shot the ball, it was lucky that it went in," said a modest Stovall.

"Mike followed through on his shot, like we've been trying to tell him and he's been practicing, and it went in," Webster said. "You need luck on your side sometimes, but at the same time when you practice those type of shots, I'm not saying it was the best shot, but it was the shot that we needed."

It was the first regular season conference win for the Blue Demons since March 6, 2008 at Cincinnati. Needless to say, the Blue Demons were ecstatic to get the win.

"It feels good, not just for myself, but for this guy here," said Webster gesturing to Will Walker. "He's a senior and he's been through a lot."

"It feels good to get the monkey off our back," said Walker. "A lot of people have been doubting us for years."

Webster admitted that he hadn't looked at the game stats. with all of the celebrating going on in the locker room. Nobody could blame him.

"We wanted to enjoy the victory in the locker room," said Webster. "Our guys did a great job of battling, battling, battling. That's all we ask for to battle, battle on the floor for loose balls and really don't give up. I thought they did a really good job of not giving up."

The Blue Demons did indeed battle back as they trailed by as many as 12 points in the first half.

"1000 percent credit goes to DePaul," Williams said. "They played with great passion and great energy. They were more deserving of a win than we were."

Where the credit most lied was with DePaul's effort on the defensive end. The Demons held the Golden Eagles to just 18 second half points.

"We talked about just defending and being there on rotations," said Webster. "Just making sure you were aware of where players were and not allowing guys open looks."

Senior forward Lazar Hayward led the way for MU with 14 points, however, the Demons' defense held him scoreless in the second half.

"I thought our guys were aware of where he was," Webster said of Hayward. "We wanted our guys to understand who were the guys that wanted to take the big shots in crunch time, and he's one of those guys."

Walker led all scorers with 17 points. Sophomore guard Jeremiah Kelly contributed with 11. Yet it was five of Stovall's nine points that mattered most.

Sophomore big man Krys Faber, starting in place of the injured Mac Koswal, grabbed 10 rebounds.

"Our big guys, you have to give them credit," said Webster. "I thought they did a good job."

It was the first time in a long time that there were festivities in the locker room for DePaul.

"There was a lot of energy in there," said Walker. "I haven't seen it like that in a long, long time."

Notes:

- Mario Stula sat out today's game after having surgery on his nose.

- The 18 second half points allowed to Marquette are the fewest in a half since DePaul held Rutgers to 17 (second half) on Jan. 13, 2007.

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