Christina Foggie thought she had made the game-winner.
There was no doubt about her game-tying 3-pointer.
The Vanderbilt sophomore banked in a 3-pointer as time expired and forced overtime. She scored five more points in the extra period and finished with 15 as the Commodores outlasted Florida for a 75-69 victory on Thursday night at Memorial Gymnasium.
With 15 seconds left in regulation, Foggie was called for an offensive foul, which negated her go-ahead jumper. After two Florida free throws with 10 seconds remaining, Vanderbilt (20-6, 8-5 in the SEC) had one last chance. Foggie curled off a screen, grabbed the handoff from Jasmine Lister and dribbled to the left wing. There she was fronted by Florida’s Lanita Bartley.
With the game clock ticking to one second, Foggie maneuvered to the side and fired off an awkward, off-balanced shot. The ball bounced off the backboard and hit the back iron and right side of the rim before falling in as the buzzer sounded.
“I completely just threw it up,” Foggie said between laughs. “It hit every part — the backboard, the rim a few times. Lucky. Just lucky.”
In overtime, she didn’t leave it up to chance.
Her assist to Kady Schrann in transition tied the game. Foggie then scored the next three points and gave the Commodores’ their first lead since the 12:06 mark in the first half. Her two free throws with nine seconds to go created a four-point cushion and iced the win.
Foggie, the SEC’s leading scorer, missed nine of her first 10 shots, including her first four 3-pointers, and committed a career-high six turnovers. Over the last 8:30, including overtime, it was a different story as she scored 12 points. Head coach Melanie Balcomb said when her shooting guard decided to put the ball on the floor and attack the rim, more opportunities opened up.
“They were denying me pretty hard,” said Foggie, who averages 18.1 points. “I definitely just took a step back and tried to get open in different ways than I normally have to.”
Vanderbilt trailed by as many as seven and was down by six with 6:33 left. Lister rattled off six of her 16 points to tie it and Florida (16-10, 6-7) never led by more than three after that.
The Commodores also caught a break late, trailing by three. On a Gators’ offensive possession, the game clock and shot clock froze with 1:15 left. Florida coach Amanda Butler said one of her assistant coaches noticed the mistake afterwards but believes the clock stopped for at least 14 seconds before the scorekeeper caught the error.
Butler said the play is not a “correctable error” since the referees failed to review the replay at the next dead ball.
“It wasn’t recognized by anyone other than people who couldn’t make the change. ... Certainly when you look at the way the game ended, that’s unfortunate. It is unfortunate for our kids,” said Butler, a native of Mt. Juliet. “However, you’ve got to give Vanderbilt credit, Foggie credit for heaving that ball up to the rim. As crazy of a shot it was she still got it off.”
Four Vanderbilt players scored in double figures, with Tiffany Clarke and Stephanie Holzer each recording double-doubles. Clarke scored a game-high 18 points and matched a career-high with 17 rebounds. Holzer had 14 points and 12 rebounds. Jennifer George led Florida with 17 points.
Vanderbilt has won five of six, bouncing back from a road loss to No. 18 Georgia on Sunday. The setback temporarily prevented the Commodores from picking up their 20th win, achieving the feat for the 13th consecutive season.
“I just like our fight back,” Balcomb said. “We were pushed and pushed and they were the aggressor. We fought back [Thursday]. We pushed back.”