Four free throws by Deon Edwin gave Southern Mississippi a definitive lead in overtime and the Golden Eagles made four of six free throws in the waning seconds to take a 67-64 win from Western Kentucky in each team's season opener.
In overtime, Western Kentucky jumped ahead on Kevin Kaspar's 3-pointer. Norville Carey cut the lead to 61-59 with a free throw, setting up Edwin's go-ahead freebies.
The Hilltoppers leapfrogged Southern Miss for a 56-55 lead late with a 15-4 run. The Golden Eagles clawed back for a 58-56 advantage, but George Fant made two free throws with 1:22 left for an overtime-inducing tie.
The Golden Eagles led by as much as 24-10 with about six minutes left in the first half, but the Hilltoppers cut the lead to 30-22 by halftime.
The win was the first for new Southern Miss coach Donnie Tyndall.