Kenny Satterfield's latest last-minute misadventure didn't cost Cincinnati a game it desperately wanted to win.
Satterfield wasted another late chance in regulation, but made a short jumper and four free throws in overtime as the Bearcats recovered to beat No. 9 Wake Forest 78-72 Saturday.
Cincinnati (13-6) blew a nine-point lead in the first half and a 10-point lead in the final 4:42, as Wake Forest's Broderick Hicks scored 13 points in a closing flurry. His 3-pointer tied it at 66 with a minute left.
Hicks was off the mark in overtime, though, missing consecutive 3-point attempts while Wake Forest (14-5) missed four shots in a row and the Bearcats pulled away.
"This was all about getting back to where we need to be," said Cincinnati's Jamaal Davis, who had 11 points and a team-high eight rebounds. "We wanted to get Cincinnati basketball back on the map. We wanted to open people's eyes and let them know we're back."
Cincinnati had lost four of its last seven games and felt it had to beat the last nationally ranked team on its schedule.
Wake Forest wanted to pull out of a road slump that has soured its quick start. After opening the season 12-0, the Demon Deacons have lost all five of their road games in January.
"We wanted to win a road game," Hicks said. "We needed to win a road game. We still do."
They had their opportunity after Cincinnati let its 10-point lead slip away.
After Hicks' 3-pointer tied the game, Cincinnati set up for a final shot. Satterfield waited until less than 10 seconds remaind before driving into the crowded lane, where Hicks knocked the ball loose.
It was the fifth time this season that Satterfield has failed to come through in the closing seconds with a chance to tie or win a game. Cincinnati lost the other four.
The point guard provided a different outcome by hitting a short pull-up jumper 1:24 left in overtime. Steve Logan followed with a jumper for a 74-70 lead that held up.
The overtime loss came three days after Wake Forest's 85-62 loss to Duke.
"We've been through a tough stretch and it's not over yet," Wake Forest coach Dave Odom said. "The people in our league are probably itching to get to us right now and we've got to be eager to get to them."
Wake Forest again was limited because its top scorer was sick. Josh Howard, averaging a team-high 14.5 points, sat out the loss to Duke because of the flu and played sparingly Saturday, scoring only four points.
Logan led Cincinnati with 20 points, and Satterfield added 14. Hicks and Darius Songaila led Wake Forest with 18 apiece.
Neither team shot well enough to take control of the game in a fiery first half.
Consecutive 3-pointers by Field Williams, Logan and Leonard Stokes put the Bearcats up 19-10. A half-minute later, Cincinnati coach Bob Huggins got Wake Forest's comeback rolling by hopping up and down on the court, waving his fists, while screaming for an over-the-back call on Wake Forest.
Referee John Clougherty, who's gone nose-to-nose with Huggins in the past, had an angry sideline exchange with the coach after calling a technical, which started Wake Forest's tying 11-2 spurt.
Clougherty had another animated exchange with Huggins during a timeout later in the half, which ended with Wake Forest up 28-26.
Satterfield, who's been in a prolonged shooting slump, rebounded from a scoreless first half by leading a run that put Cincinnati ahead by 10 early in the second half.
Robert O'Kelley's 3-pointer started an eight-point run by Wake Forest that cut the lead to two points, but Logan hit a driving bank shot and a fastbreak 3-pointer that rebuilt the lead to 61-51 with 4:42 to play.
Hicks then scored 10 consecutive points, leading Wake Forest's tying surge.
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