GAME OF THE DAY: Radford 82, Georgetown 80 (2OT)
In the regular season opener for both the Hoyas played a sluggish first half of basketball, doing enough to go into the locker room tied at 33 with the visiting Highlanders. Radford played with confidence throughout, with guard Rashun Davis scoring 28 points with the final three coming on a 25-footer with 1.5 seconds remaining in double overtime. While this is a big win for Radford, Georgetown now has to face the possibility of beginning the season 0-2 with a trip to Maryland set for Tuesday night.
SCORES YOU NEED TO KNOW
No. 2 Kentucky 87, NJIT 57: John Calipari’s Wildcats didn’t get off to the best start against NJIT, with guards Tyler Ulis and Jamal Murray struggling to make shots in the first half. One player who had no such issues was freshman Skal Labissiere, who scored 18 points in the first half (7-for-7 FG) and finished the game with 26 points on 10-for-12 shooting from the field.
Fellow front court starters Derek Willis (11 points) and Marcus Lee (ten points, eight rebounds, three blocks) also played well, and Isaiah Briscoe accounted for 11 points and 12 rebounds in his regular season debut. Damon Lynn, who was saddled with foul trouble in the first half, paced NJIT with 19 points.
Next up for the Wildcats is No. 5 Duke at the Champions Classic.
No. 5 Duke 113, Bryant 75: Grayson Allen picked up where he left off Friday night, scoring 28 points and dishing out six assists as the reigning national champions blew out Bryant. Junior Matt Jones added 19 points, shooting 5-for-6 from three, and freshman Brandon Ingram scored 21 points. Duke shot 53.4 percent from the field and 13-for-26 from beyond the arc, and they also forced 19 Bryant turnovers on the night. Hunter Ware scored 24 points to lead the way for Bryant, but with the turnover count being what it was the Bulldogs saw the gap grow as the game went on.
No. 24 Butler 144, The Citadel 71: Butler scored 92 points in the paint in a game that got out of hand quickly. You can read more about this contest here.
Providence 76, Harvard 64: While he didn’t shoot as well from the field as he would have liked, there’s debating the influence Providence point guard Kris Dunn had on the Friars’ 12-point win over the Crimson. Dunn (11-for-26 FG) filled the box score, finishing with 32 points, six rebounds, five assists, eight steals and two turnovers.
But while Dunn’s night was impressive overall, do not overlook the importance of Rodney Bullock’s 20 points. Providence will need other options to step forward to help Dunn, and Bullock is one possibility. The key: consistency, so if Bullock can build on this outing the Friars will be that much better for it.
Rashun Davis, Radford: Davis accounted for 28 points, four rebounds and five assists in the Highlanders’ double overtime win over Georgetown. Radford was picked to finish fourth in the Big South preseason poll, but if Davis and company can duplicate Saturday’s showing that spot may prove to be too low.
Kris Dunn, Providence: Dunn shot just 11-for-26 from the field but that didn’t stop him from making an impact, as he finished with 32 points, six rebounds, five assists and eight steals.
Jordan Price, La Salle: Price was efficient helping to lead the Explorers to a 78-76 win over Towson, scoring 27 points on 7-for-13 shooting from the field while also grabbing six rebounds. Johnnie Schuler’s three free throws in the final 40 seconds proved to be the difference for Dr. John Giannini’s team.
Quinton Chievous, Hampton: The Pirates may have lost 102-95 to Winthrop but Chievous did his best to keep that from happening, accounting for 29 points, 23 rebounds and three assists in the defeat. Jimmy Gavin scored 26 and Xavier Cooks added 22 and nine rebounds to lead the way for Winthrop.
The Citadel: The process of putting in his full-court press will take Duggar Baucom some time. The Bulldogs fell 144-71 at Butler, giving up 92 points in the paint as Butler shot nearly 64 percent from the field.
Kentucky’s Tyler Ulis and Jamal Murray: The fact that Ulis and Murray combined to score 13 points on 4-for-21 shooting didn’t matter Saturday night against NJIT. But these games are about getting better in advance of their big games, the first of which set for Tuesday night against No. 5 Duke in Chicago. Those two will need to be better if Kentucky’s to win that showdown.
Harvard’s Tommy McCarthy: With Siyani Chambers out for the year with a torn ACL, McCarthy is an important player for the Crimson. And even though he did dish out seven assists in their loss at Providence he struggled shooting the ball, making just two of his 13 attempts from the field.
Mississippi Valley State’s Isaac Williams and Rashaan Surles: The Delta Devils’ starting backcourt combined to score four points on 1-for-11 shooting in a 97-51 loss at Nebraska.
- Colorado State picked up a quality road win Saturday afternoon, as they won 84-78 at Northern Iowa. Gian Clavell, Joe De Ciman and John Gillon scored 16 points apiece to lead the way for the Rams, who shot 65.6 percent from two against a team that limited opponents to 44 percent shooting inside of the arc last season.
- UMass rallied from a 14-points second half deficit to beat Howard 85-79 in Amherst. At one point in the second half Trey Davis scored ten straight points, finishing with 19 points while Jabarie Hinds added 19 points and eight assists. James Daniel led the Bison with a game-high 30 points.
- Eli Carter scored 23 points to lead Boston College to a comfortable win over St. Francis-Brooklyn. But the most exciting development for BC fans has to be the play of freshman Jerome Robinson, who finished with 19 points and six rebounds. Keep an eye on him as the season wears on.
- Jaaron Simmons accounted for 20 points and seven assists ad Ohio beat FGCU 85-75, shooting 7-for-8 from the foul line in the game’s final minute to seal the win. Kenny Kaminski added 17 points and nine rebounds for the Bobcats.
- James Woodard and Shaquille Harrison combined for 45 points and eight steals as Tulsa beat Central Arkansas 98-81. The Golden Hurricane have one of the better perimeter tandems around in these two upperclassmen, and they’re a big reason why this team should contend in the American Athletic Conference.
- Jamel Waters racked up 21 points, six rebounds and seven assists to lead Alabama State to an 85-82 win over Virginia Tech, thus spoiling a solid debut for USF transfer Zach LeDay. LeDay led the Hokies with 26 points and 15 rebounds.
- Jack Gibbs scored 35 points while also grabbing five rebounds and dishing out five assists to lead defending Atlantic 10 regular season champion Davidson to a 90-85 win over UCF. Four starters scored in double figures for the Wildcats, and Adonys Henriquez led UCF with 18 points, seven rebounds and five assists.
- Another freshman who had a good night was guard Shake Milton, who scored 17 points off the bench in SMU’s comfortable win over Sam Houston State.
- Creighton’s newcomers made their presences felt in the Bluejays’ 93-70 win over Texas Southern. Freshman Khyri Thomas scored a team-high 18 points, with classmate Martin Krampelj adding 11 and eight rebounds and transfers Mo Watson Jr. (ten points, seven assists) and Cole Huff (12 points, six rebounds) reaching double figures as well. Isaiah Zierden, who’s battled injuries throughout his career, finished the game with 15 points.