With a minute and a half to go in regulation, Chicago State's Quinton Pippen (nephew of Scottie Pippen) hit a three-pointer to give the Cougars a one-point lead. Chicago State later increased lead to three, but SU's Isiah Umipig hit a trey with five seconds remaining to force overtime.
In the first extra session, Shore Adenekan and Umipig played Mr. Inside and Mr. Outside to spark an 8-1 run for the Redhawks, but the Cougars clawed back and forced another OT after Nate Duhon's game-tying layup with 24 seconds left.
The second OT was defined by defense and free throws, and both teams struggled to score. After Umipig made two free throws to tie the score with 1:05 on the clock, neither team scored for the rest of the frame, and Umipig missed a three that could have won it at the buzzer.
Some of Seattle U's familiar flaws -- turnovers and offensive ineffectiveness -- came into play in the third overtime. During a crucial three-minute stretch, the Redhawks went 0-for-5 from the field and committed three turnovers as the Cougars pulled away for the win.
"The team gave a good effort, but we need to figure out a way to come out on top in these situations," Seattle U coach Cameron Dollar said afterward.
Umipig led the Redhawks (12-14 overall, 4-9 in the WAC) with 23 points, hitting five threes and setting a new school record for three-pointers in a season with 90. Junior guard Jarell Flora scored 15 points and made four threes, while junior forward Adenekan added 13 points off the bench. Senior forward Clarence Trent had a game-high 16 rebounds.
Clarke Rosenberg and Matt Ross led Chicago State (12-16, 7-6) with 17 points each.
With the loss, SU falls a half-game behind Texas-Pan American and Cal State Bakersfield for last place in the WAC.
Seattle U's final home game is Saturday against Idaho. Trent and point guard D'Vonne Pickett Jr. will be honored before the game on Senior Night, and the 2014 class of inductees into the SU Athletics Hall of Fame, which includes point guard Gary Ladd (1968-72), who once held the school's all-time assists record.