Markus Howard is one of the best shooters in the NCAA at the moment. We, the basketball fans, all knew that. But after tonight’s record-breaking performance, people who are not that into NCAA are also going to know his name.
The 19-year old dropped 53 points in his Marquette’s win over the Creighton Bluejays after overtimes 106-104.
“It’s like an out-of-body experience. None of that was me. I give all that to God. He took control of that game for me. I can’t take the credit for it. My teammates put me in great positions,” the youngster stated after the game.
Relive Markus Howard’s impressive performance, breaking the Big East single game scoring record with 53 points against Creighton! 💪pic.twitter.com/7VukGvE4un
— NCAA March Madness (@marchmadness) January 10, 2019
Howard was simply unstoppable, hitting from all the positions, and keeping the Golden Eagles alive, after a slow opening of the game, and a period in which they trailed 13 points.
But the ultimate display of his abilities came in the extra five minutes. Junior guard from Chandler, Arizona, single-handedly beat the Bluejays with 14 points.
His stats were looking like this, 53 points, 15 of 26 from the field, 13 of 15 from the free throw line, six assists, and 9 turnovers.
“I guess we shouldn’t be surprised anymore,” Marquette coach Steve Wojciechowski said. “He’s done it enough where on certain nights he’s capable of being magical. Every night he’s really, really good.”
Besides scoring, he made an inbound pass after which Sam Hauser scored a stunning three, which tied the result and forced the overtimes.
Howard also hit 10 of his 14 attempts behind the arc, which is amazing. At the moment the 5-foot-11 is the top scorer in the Big East with 25.8 points, and this was his third game with 40+points, since the season started.
Also, his personal record is now one point better, as he surpassed last year’s achievement against Providence when he shredded their defense with 52 buckets.
The whole game was outstanding, not just Howard’s performance. The hosts were up by a double-digit difference during the middle of the first half, and they never trailed until the start of the overtimes. In fact, the only time they weren’t ahead was when the game ended, and Hauser made that three.
With 8 seconds until the end, Creighton had an 85-80 lead. Joseph Chartouny scored a layup with 0.8 seconds to go. The ball was in Bluejays possession, all they needed to do is to make an inbound pass, and the game would be over.
But Connor Cashaw did the unthinkable and his pass ended on the opposite side of the floor, leaving the court out of bounds.
Howard took the ball, found Hauser who scored from downtown, and silenced the home fans who couldn’t believe what just happened to their team. Without a doubt, this ending is the most thrilling one since the start of this season.
SAM HAUSER. ONIONS!!!!! pic.twitter.com/w5pg7XTVBH
— Nathan Marzion (@natemar3i0n) January 10, 2019
“That was one of the most incredible college basketball games I’ve ever been a part of. I know I’m not ancient, but I’ve been a part of playing or coaching some incredible games.” Wojciechowski said after the match.
For the Golden Eagles, this has been the sixth straight triumph against this opponent. They now have 13 wins and 3 losses (2-1 in Big East), and finally, a victory on the road. Their 21st place on the AP Poll rankings might be better after this win, but to be sure about that they need to defeat Seton Hall this Saturday.
When looking at Marquette’s current form, it seems that they are pretty fired-up, with only one loss in the past 11 contest. Still, they have to be more consistent on the road, in order to make a significant result this season.
With Howard at this level, they just might be one of the nicest surprises of the entire campaign.