Game of the Night
La Salle 88, Iona 74: In a game loaded with talented guards and mostly devoid of a concept known as defense, you’re almost always guaranteed to see some exciting basketball. That’s exactly what happened at La Salle on Thursday, as the Explorers and Gaels combined for 94 points in the first half. La Salle eventually pulled away in the second half, thanks in large part to the terrific performance of Virginia Tech transfer Tyrone Garland. Garland, playing in his second game with the Explorers, finished with 26 points. Ramon Galloway added 21 and 10 assists.
Wichita State 65, Charleston Southern 53: The Shockers picked up a win as they played their first game without Carl Hall or Ron Baker. Cleanthony Early finished with 20 points and 10 boards in the win.
Isaiah Sykes, Central Florida: Sykes finished with a triple-double, going for 16 points, 11 boards and 10 assists in a win over Stetson.
Gabriel Knutson and Mackey McKnight, Lehigh: Playing without CJ McCollum, who is battling a sprained ankle, the Mountain Hawks got 53 points combined from Knutson and McKnight as they knocked off North Texas 90-75 in Denton, TX. The Mean Green have been one of the most disappointing teams in the country. Knutson outplayed future lottery pick Tony Mitchell.
Memphis: Lipscomb lost to Ole Miss by 46 points. They lost two games to Belmont by a combined 63 points. Kentucky beat them by 28. Memphis? They barely outlasted the Bison in a barnburner, 62-56. I think it may be time to start talking about the Tigers, who were 21-39 from the free throw line, as a potential NIT team.
Jio Fontan, USC: Daman Starring scored 23 points and grabbed six boards for UC-Irvine as the Anteaters knocked off the Trojans. In the loss, Fontan finished with two points and four turnovers on 1-6 shooting.
The rest of the top 25
– No. 1 Duke 76, Elon 54
– No. 2 Michigan 93, Eastern Michigan 54