DALLAS — Hall of Fame coach Larry Brown is headed back to Madison Square Garden, this time taking his SMU Mustangs to the NIT semifinals.
Former Van Wert resident Nic Moore provided one more dose of Moody Magic, getting a nice screen from Markus Kennedy on a seldom-used play to make a 3-pointer with 6.5 seconds left Wednesday night to push the Mustangs past California 67-65.
“We’ve run that play in practice every day. We haven’t used it once in a game, maybe once that I can remember,” Brown said. “We got a wide-open look. I wasn’t thinking of a 3 to be honest with you. I was hoping we’d be able to post the ball, but we had a great shooter make a big shot and not be afraid of it.”
SMU (26-9), snubbed by the NCAA tournament after its only three-game losing streak of the season, has rebounded with three consecutive NIT victories at home.
Moore, who moved to Indiana and later played for Warsaw High School after his seventh grade year at Van Wert, finished with 11 points. Relatives living in Van Wert include Moore’s father, Michael, Uncle Ray, Aunts Mary Turner and Shari Darnell and grandfather and grandmother, Richard and Mary. Moore also has an uncle, Tyrone, living in Fort Wayne. The redshirt sophomore transferred to SMU from Illinois State where he played one season.