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NE Illinois 78, W. Illinois 75

February 7, 1997

MACOMB, Ill. (AP) _ Freshman Brad Bestor hit a 3-pointer with seven seconds on the clock to climax a Northeastern Illinois rally as the Golden Eagles rallied from a 23-point deficit to beat Western Illinois 78-75 in Mid-Continent Conference game Thursday night.

Western’s Leathernecks (12-8 overall, 7-4 Mid-Con) led 37-31 at halftime and built the lead to 58-35 with 12:12 left before Northeastern’s Golden Eagles (13-7, 6-4) began their comeback.

A layup by Northeastern’s William Keys tied the game at 72 with 1:01. After the teams traded leads, Dave Kutcher made the first of two free throws for Western with 32 seconds left to tie the game at 75. He then missed the second, and Bestor’s 3-point shot won the game.

Mark Heidersbach led Northeastern with 22 points. Keys added 19 and Bestor had 15.

Clint Ford and Mark Buckingham led Western with 17 points each.

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