It was more than a big win before a big crowd (4,472) at Memorial Coliseum on Friday night. The Mad Ants' 119-110 double-overtime victory over Springfield might have been the signature win of the season.
How a basketball team (Ants) and player (Tony Mitchell) can look so bad and then look so sensational all within the confines of the same game is beyond me.
The Ants were really good when they went up by 17 points in the first half, mostly behind Ron Howard's 22 points in the first two periods.
And Mitchell looked as though he was somewhere else for much of regulation, when the Ants fell behind by seven points midway through the fourth quarter.
He had picked up three fouls in 48 seconds inside the first three minutes of the game, and parked it on the bench throughout the first half. But even in the second half, we wasn't that great, and had seven points on 1-of-11 shooting at the end of regulation.
Then somebody found the switch on the 6-foot-8 forward, and he shot the lights out in the two overtimes.
Mitchell scored all four points in the first overtime and all 12 in the second to finish with 23 points. He came out to start the second half by dropping three straight three-pointers, added a driving layup from the right side off a deflected ball, then hit a free throw.