KIRKLAND, Wash. - Mitchell Fink sank 3 of 4 free throws in the final 51 seconds to help lift No. 19 Oregon Tech to an 89-86 Cascade Conference victory over Northwest University Saturday Night at the Eagles Nest.
NU's Tre Benton would tie the game at 78-78 with 5:51 to go in the game, but Harrison Steiger would put OIT into the lead, 80-78 with his two free throws, at the 5:10 mark. NU would then wipe out a four point Owl lead to tie the game at 86-all after Tre Benton's two free throws at 1:21. But, Fink would then hit one of two free throws for an 87-86 lead. After Northwest U would fail on two attempts to re-take the lead, Fink would then clinch the game with two more from the free throw line with 1.2 seconds left on the clock. NU would then turn the ball over inbounding the ball as Tech picked up its first win in Kirkland since 2012.
The game started like a track meet with the two teams just trading baskets for the first four minutes of the game. After the fifth tie at 16:07, NU's Ryan Rick's would give the Eagles a brief lead, 16-13 with his 3-pointer. Tyler Hieb's trey would give the lead back to OIT, 22-21 with 13:27 on the clock and OIT would maintain the lead until the 9:42 mark when NU would tie the game at 30-30. Two more lead changes would give OIT the advantage the remainder of the half as the Owls would build a 7 point, 53-46 lead as Mitchel Fink would score with 4 seconds to go to end the half.
Northwest U would slowly chip away at the Tech lead in the second half and with 14:07 to go in the game, a 3-pointer by Tre Benton would give the lead back to NU, 62-60. Another lead change would see Oregon Tech leading 73-68 at the 9:24 mark, but NU would come back to tie and then regain the lead, 77-75, after Jasdeep Singh's tip-in with 6:31 to go which would set up the final 5:51 in the game.
Tre Benton led Northwest U (8-6, 2-2 CCC) in his first game of the season with 29 points and 9 rebounds. Jasdeep Singh finished with 11 points for the Eagles who shot 44% for the game and 60% from beyond the 3-point line.
Oregon Tech (10-4, 3-1 CCC) was led by sophomore guard Mitchel Fink's 27 points, 6 assists and 4 steals.Tyler Hieb added 18 points and Seth Erickson scored 11 while pulling down 6 rebounds. OIT hit 51% of their shots (34-66) and 15 of 18 from the free throw line for 83%.
The Owls return home for a five game home-stand starting Friday, December 29 when they host Multnomah University to kick-off K-12 Family weekend. All students' kindergarten through 12th grade will be admitted free all weekend.