BUFFALO, N.Y. – The Big 4 Classic returned to downtown Buffalo for the first time in two years as all four area schools were represented.
The highlight of the afternoon was a thrilling overtime contest between University at Buffalo and Canisius, where the Griffs won 94-87.
Reggie Witherspoon, once a longtime coach at UB and in his inaugural season with Canisius, faced his former team for the first time since he was fired as the head coach of the Bulls.
Canisius was lead by Jermaine Crumpton, who had a career-high 31 points. The two teams swapped the lead the entire second half before heading to overtime tied at 81. Canisius came out of the gate hot and scored three straight times to seal the victory.
UB head coach Nate Oats called the loss “embarrassing.” Witherspoon said the win was mostly emotional for his family.
Canisius (7-5) visits St. Bonaventure on Thursday, UB (5-6) hosts Robert Morris on Wednesday.
The first game of the double header featured St. Bonaventure and Niagara. The Bonnies led the entirety of the game and won 79-69.
Niagara cut the lead to as close as two points with under 14 minutes to play but Bonaventure had answer for every Purple Eagles threat, getting scoring from nine players.
Jaylen Adams scored a game high 23 points, including five three pointers.
The Bonnies (7-3) face Army on Monday, Niagara (3-9) plays LIU Brooklyn on Wednesday.