In the final minute of the first half between Western Kentucky and No. 4 Louisville saw two players diving for a loose ball turn into a scrum, resulting in the best player on the floor, Montrezl Harrell, being ejected from the game.
Harrell had corralled an offensive rebound in the middle of the lane but had it stripped by Brandon Price. Things got heated as the two went to the floor for the ball, and after the whistle was blown, Harrell jumped to his feet and took a swing at Western Kentucky’s Avery Patterson.
Harrell was ejected from the game, though, he will not be forced to sit out a game with an automatic suspension. Following Louisville’s 76-67 win, Harrell spoke about the incident with reporters.
“It was a heated situation,” Harrell said. “Everything took a turn for the worse. It’s bad that I overreacted in the heat of the moment, and I just want to apologize to my teammates. I want to apologize to the University of Louisville and apologize to my coaching staff. I know I shouldn’t have acted that way and I’m truly sorry.”
Without Harrell on the floor, Louisville maintained the lead behind Terry Rozier’s career-high 32 points, 26 of which came after halftime.
“They came out in a hostile situation, in a hostile environment, and they responded well,” Harrell added.
Despite missing the entire second half, Harrell finished with 14 points and six rebounds in 17 minutes.
Louisville returns home to host Cal State Northridge on Tuesday night.
[h/t Card Chronicle]