The Money Team, which included players from Gonzaga, Eastern Washington and Idaho, committed costly mistakes late and made a quick exit from The Basketball Tournament (TBT).
Herd That never led until closing with a 16-2 run to upset The Money Team 102-99 Thursday in Columbus, Ohio.
The Money Team, seeded seventh, led by as many as 18 in the first quarter and was on top 93-84 after a solid stretch by former Eastern Washington star Jacob Wiley. He scored on a putback and swatted a shot before The Money Team called a timeout inside 4 minutes, triggering the TBT’s Elam Ending. The clock was turned off with the winning team the first one to reach the target score of 101.
The Money Team, sponsored by boxing great Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather Jr., was comfortably ahead 97-86 when its high-octane offense went dry thanks to questionable shot selection and a pair of turnovers.
Herd That cut into the lead before former Zag Kyle Wiltjer’s bucket from close range gave The Money Team a 99-93 lead.
Wiltjer nearly ended it, but his 17-footer rattled in and out. Teammate Devin Williams had a chance to win it, but he misfired on two free throws, and Herd That took its first lead, 100-99, on Jacorey Williams’ dunk.
Former Arizona Wildcat Ryan Luther’s layup after another The Money Team turnover sealed the win for Herd That, made up primarily of former Marshall players.
Wiltjer, who played professionally in Turkey last season, finished with nine points on 4-of-11 shooting. He limped off the floor early in the first quarter with an apparent leg injury but returned to play 14 minutes despite battling foul trouble.
Former Idaho Vandal Jeff Ledbetter, who joined Wiltjer in the starting lineup, had three points and three assists, one of those leading to a Wiltjer 3-pointer, in 17 minutes, 39 seconds of playing time. Ledbetter has played the past four seasons with San Antonio’s NBA G League franchise.
Wiley, who played for Panathinaikos in Greece last season, was productive in 15 minutes, putting up 10 points on 5-of-6 shooting. He grabbed five rebounds and added two assists.
Wiley’s dunk just before the halftime buzzer gave The Money Team a 62-55 lead. He added another dunk and a transition layup to boost his team’s advantage to 73-61 in the third quarter.
Chris Cokley and Jacorey Williams combined for 62 points for No. 23 Herd That, which will face No. 2 Overseas Elite, a 76-70 winner over 15 Armored Athlete, in the quarterfinals of the $1 million, winner-take-all tournament.
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