Dawson Garcia's jumper with five seconds left in overtime lifted Minnesota to a 62-61 win over California Baptist in the opening game of the SoCal Challenge, Surf Division on Monday night.
The Golden Gophers will face the winner of the tournament nightcap between Southern Illinois and UNLV in the championship Wednesday night.
Taran Armstrong drilled a 3-pointer with 1:09 left in regulation to tie the game at 53-53, but he missed a layup at the buzzer that would have given California Baptist the win. Jamison Battle missed two 3-point attempts in the final minute for Minnesota.
Joe Quintana's jumper with 1:25 left in overtime gave the Lancers a 61-58 lead, but Pharrell Payne dunked to pull Minnesota within one and, after Armstrong missed a 3 with 27 seconds left, Garcia knocked down the game-winner.
Payne came off the bench to lead Minnesota (4-1) with 15 points and 13 rebounds. Battle added 11 points and Garcia contributed 10 points.
Armstrong hit 5 of 9 from distance and finished with 24 points to lead California Baptist (3-2).
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