Niki Avery hit a three-pointer Saturday at the end of regulation in Charleston, Ill. However, the officials wanted to check and make sure that the buzzer-beating shot had really tied the game or if it was just a long two-pointer.

Fortunately, just a weekend prior the Ohio Valley Conference implemented a courtside replay system for just such occasions.

So the officials went to the monitors only to discover they couldn’t look at it.

“The camera they had was not fixed on that end so what happened is they didn’t have a picture,” Eastern Kentucky University coach Larry Joe Inman said. “(The officials) went over and looked at the monitor, called us together and said, ‘We don’t have a monitor and the bucket is good’. So we played overtime.”

It may take a few more games like that to get all the bugs of the newly-devised system worked out, but the consensus among men and women coaches is they are glad to have it.

“I think its a good thing,” EIU men’s coach Mike Miller said. “I think in every game we’ve played in, with the exception of two in the OVC, has been a one or two-possession game with two minutes to play. There is so much at stake, it’s available and it’s part of the rules, so I think we need to take advantage of it.”

In 44 league games thus far on the men’s side the average margin of victory has been 7.97 points.

The decision to go to the monitors between EKU and EIU was the first end-of-regulation usage of the system, but OVC Assistant Commissioner of Media Relations Kyle Schwartz said it was not the first usage.

During a Tennessee State and Samford men’s it was used to determine whether a shot was a three or a two just before the half. The TSU coach questioned the three-point call, but it was upheld by the replay.

Schwartz also said there is no record of how many in-game decisions have been looked at or changed thus far in the two weeks of having the replay available.

“It is probably the right thing to do,” EKU men’s coach Jeff Neubauer said. “We’ve been fortunate not to have been in any situation where that would have mattered, but if you lose or win a game because the lack of replay that is where it really matters.”

Inman says he likes it because it insures an honest call and makes the game more fair for the athletes, which is the main priority.

Just enough

Mike Rose needed five points in a game against Eastern Illinois to reach 900 for his Colonel career. The small forward got seven to stand at 902 thus far.

Rose leads the team with 14.1 points per game. He was also the leading scorer last year with 15.1 ppg and in the last 49 games he is averaging 14.6 ppg.

In his career he is hitting 43.4 percent from the field, 36.9 percent from three-point range and 74.3 percent from the foul line.

The junior scored a career-high 27 points last year against East Tennessee State and came up two shy of tying that in the first game with EIU this year.

EKU has 13 regular-season games remaining, which means Rose is on pace to break 1,000 points this season. He would be the 28th Colonel to reach that mark.

Record watch

Lady Colonel Ashley Cazee has moved within six three-pointers of tying Chrissy Roberts with 151 makes.

The senior had three three-pointers in an overtime loss to EIU this past Saturday. She is also climbing the ladder of most three-pointers attempted, moving into second (405) with her five attempts against the Lady Panthers.

Cazee’s three steals in the game tied Lisa Goodin for ninth on the all-time steals list with 182.

Avery hasn’t shied away from the three-point shot. In less than two years she has taken 322 threes. Her nine attempts against EIU broke a tie with Laura Shelton and leap-frogged Roberts for fifth behind assistant coach Lisa Pace with 373 shots.

Of her 322 attempts, Avery has hit 124 putting her sixth on the all-time list, seven behind Pace, who was passed early this season by Cazee.

The New York native also holds the school record in men’s and women’s three-pointers made in a game. She hit eight in a game last year to set the mark and then broke her own record recently with nine in a holiday tournament.

New faces

Both the men’s and women’s teams added a player during the Christmas break.

The Lady Colonels welcomed freshman Laura Becerra. She is a 5-foot-5 guard from Bogota, Columbia where she played for the national team.

Inman hopes she can help share minutes at the point position with Avery once she learns the system. She has played in two games, averaging four minutes and scored her first points in a blowout loss at Morehead State.

Robert Martina transferred from Ball State and joined the Colonels during Christmas. The forward from Pompano Beach, Fla. received his release because of the coaching change when Ronny Thompson resigned.

Martina will have to sit out a year and thus will not be available until after the first semester next year.

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