@NKUNorseMBB in Saint Thomas: Day 2; Norse defeat USVI National Team in buzzer-beating fashion

SAINT THOMAS, U.S Virgin Islands –  Competition. There’s just one word needed to describe the second day in Saint Thomas for the Northern Kentucky University men’s basketball team. It started with a “friendly” scavenger hunt around the island and ended with the team’s first competition while on the trip, a thrilling 85-84 win courtesy of Tyler Sharpe’s buzzer-beating lay-up.


Team Kizel, which was captained by Video Coordinator Joey Kizel and comprised of Jalen Tate, Silas Adheke, Tre Cobbs, Paul Djoko, Adrian Nelson and Bryson Langdon, claimed a convincing 3-0 win in the scavenger hunt.


Three phases comprised the scavenger hunt, designed for building team chemistry while educating the Norse on the U.S. Virgin Island. In the first two phases, which occurred simultaneously with one team at each site, the teams competed to find clues and answer questions at The Pirates Treasure, a shipwreck museum that explores the history of the Caribbean Sea through the shipwrecks that have been discovered. Historical artifacts and information on the pirates that once threatened the Caribbean were part of the clues and answers.


In the other portion of the first two phases, the teams visited Chicken and Bowling. In addition to solving clues that provided the next stop on the adventure, the teams competed in bowling, with the winning team having the highest average through five frames.


The last competition took place at My Brother’s Workshop. There, the teams squared off in a cupcake decorating contest with the winning team being the one that showed the most creativity, teamwork and enthusiasm.


While Team Kizel claimed the victory in the scavenger hunt, the homeless at the Bethlehem House were the recipients of players’ efforts. Reunited as one team, the Norse delivered the decorated cupcakes to the homeless shelter.


Following a mid-afternoon pre-game meal, the players retired to their quarters for some rest before taking on the U.S. Virgin Island National Team at 7:30 p.m.


NKU 85, U.S. Virgin Island National Team 84


The day’s competition ended in thrilling fashion, with Sharpe making a lay-up as time expired to lift NKU over the U.S. Virgin Islands National Team, 85-84.


Stats Leaders

·       Sharpe led the Norse with 29 points, adding six rebounds four assists and two steals. He also buried five treys in the game.

·       Trevon Faulkner joined Sharpe above the 20-point plateau, pouring in 22 points behind 7-of-14 shooting from the floor and 7-of-7 at the charity stripe.

·       Dantez Walton shot 3-for-5 from the field en route to 12 points in limited action.

·       Adheke corralled a game-high 12 rebounds, while adding six points to the scoring column.


The Details

Northern Kentucky trailed at the break, but used a 17-2 run early in the second half to gain the lead. The USVI National Team, playing in front of a vocal home crowd, rallied to regain the advantage, extending out to as many as eight with a minute left to play. However, the Norse turned up the pressure and closed the game on a 12-3 run, capped with a trio of free throws from Faulkner which were followed by a deflection from Faulkner that resulted in Sharpe’s game-winning lay-in.



·       Eight Norse found the scoring column in the game and NKU won the battle of the boards, 47-44.

·       Northern Kentucky also notched a high assist rate, posting 20 assists on 31 made field goals for a 64.6 percent rate.


Next Up

·       Thursday’s docket provides a bit of down time in the morning and early afternoon hours. Then, the Norse are set to square off against the British Virgin Islands National Team at 5 p.m.


For more information on the trip, please follow the men’s basketball accounts on social media and visit NKUNorse.com.