Nathan Bain just made a game-winning shot in a college basketball game. But that may be the second-best thing to happen to him this week.
The 24-year-old forward made a last-second layup against the No.1-ranked Duke Blue Devils, carrying the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks to an unexpected victory.
As of this writing, the fundraiser has collected more than $125,000. Bain chalks it up to some divine intervention.
“God had it just so that the layup would just coincide with the GoFundMe,” he told CNN. “People saw it, and that was the opportunity for the GoFundMe to really take off and really help.”
The university set up the page for Bain’s family in September, but donations had slowed since then. Bain said he thought of ending the fundraiser and giving what he could to help his family rebuild.
But that was before he took the shot.
“We saw that it had skyrocketed to about $20,000 and it kept on climbing for hours, a whole day,” he said. “People kept donating from all over.”
Hurricane Dorian “gutted” Bain’s family’s home
Bain said the hurricane “gutted” his family’s home and church on Grand Bahama.
“Being so far away, it was a scary thought to think. You can’t help but think, what if your family gets trapped?”
In a post-game interview after landing the layup, Bain held back tears.
“My family lost a whole lot this year, and I’m just playing this game for them,” he said. “Just playing for my SFA family, my family back home in the Bahamas. I just want to make my country proud.”
That seemed to resonate with fans of Duke and Stephen F. Austin alike. More than 3,000 people have donated now, doubling the fundraiser’s $50,000 goal. Many have left supportive messages for Bain, his team and his family.
“It was just truly a blessing, the way things played out,” he said.