This week in college basketball, non-conference tournaments began with compelling matchups all over the country. In the Big Ten, the Wisconsin Badgers played their second straight game against a ranked opponent while Penn State matched up against their in-state rival.....in Brooklyn.
Let’s see how the four teams from the Big Ten fared on the court Monday night.
Game Of The Night:
-No. 22 Baylor Bears 70, Wisconsin Badgers 65
The Wisconsin Badgers were able to cut a 19-point deficit down to two but fell off late against No. 20 Baylor Monday night.
The Bears went into the half up 38-26. Midway through the second half, they stretched their lead to 53-34. Wisconsin fought their way back to trail by only two at 57-55 with two minutes remaining as Baylor was held to zero field goals in the final eight minutes of the game. However, Baylor made nine crucial free throws down the stretch to vault them into the championship game of the Hall of Fame Classic against Creighton tomorrow night.
The Bears were led by Manu Lecomte who scored a team high 25 points. Jo Lual- Acuil also recorded a double-double by scoring 19 points and grabbing 11 rebounds, most of it coming in the second half, to help Baylor stretch their early massive lead.
The Badgers were once again led by Ethan Happ who recorded a double-double of his own by scoring a team high 23 points and grabbing 13 rebounds. Freshman Brad Davison played a huge part in the Badgers’ second half coming with the majority of his 13 points coming in the final 20 minutes of the game.
Wisconsin (2-2) will play in the third place game against UCLA tomorrow night while Baylor (4-0) will match up with Creighton in the tournament championship.
-Louisiana Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns 80, Iowa Hawkeyes 71
The Iowa Hawkeyes suffered their first loss of a season as they could not recover from an early defecit in the Cayman Islands.
The Hawkeyes found themselves with trailing 37-17 at the half as the Ragin’ Cajuns shot 51 percent from the field in the first 20 minutes. Ten first half turnovers and only seven field goals by Iowa did not help them in cutting into the major deficit. The teams were tied at 10-10 with 11 minutes remaining in the half before Louisiana- Lafayette went on a 21-4 run to push their lead up to 20 for the first time in the game.
Iowa slowly trimmed at the lead throughout the second half. However, they would get no closer than nine points when Isaiah Moss hit a 3-pointer with two minutes remaining in the game.
Iowa finished the game with two players scoring in double figures. Moss recorded a career- high 24 points in the game while Jordan Bohannon scored 21. The Hawkeyes shot only 36 percent from the field in the contest and was less that 33 percent from behind the arc while UL-Lafayette shot 49 percent from the field.
Iowa (3-1) will take on South Dakota State in the second round of the loser’s bracket tomorrow afternoon while UL-Lafayette (3-1) will take on Wyoming tomorrow afternoon in the second round of the winner’s bracket.
Freshman Bruno Fernando led the Terrapins with a career-high 18 points over the Jackson State Tigers Monday night.
In only his second start, Fernando scored 14 of his 18 points in the first half while also adding six rebounds and three blocks to his stat line. The Terps also got double-digit scoring efforts from Kevin Huerter and Jared Nickens who each tallied 24 points.
Maryland used their large size advantage over the Tigers to dominate the game inside of the paint. They held a 44-27 rebounding advantage in the game and had more offensive rebounds (16) than the Tigers had defensive rebounds (13). The Terps once again used a strong defensive effort to seal the win by holding Jackson State to under 40 percent shooting from the field, the fourth time they have forced their opposition to do so in this young season.
Maryland (5-0) Will play St. Bonaventure this Friday in their first game in the Emerald Classic while Jacksonville State (1-3) will play Maryland Eastern-Shore on the same night.
Life at Penn State is pretty good right now as the football team is ranked in the top 10 and the basketball team had six....yes six Nittany Lions score in double figures, led by Tony Carr’s 16 points in Penn State’s blowout victory over their in-state rival Monday night to stay unbeaten on the season.
Carr was followed up by Mike Watkins and Shep Garner who each scored 13 points while Lamar Stevens, Josh Reaves, and Nazeer Bostick each scored 10 points for Penn State. Garner opened the game with a 3-pointer and the Nittany Lions never looked back in a wire-to-wire victory against the Panthers.
Penn State led 47-21 at the break and another Garner 3-pointer in the second half pushed the lead up to 63-29. The Nittany Lions used a strong defensive effort in which the Panthers only shot 31 percent from the field and gave up 14 turnovers. Penn State also held a 42-32 rebounding advantage.
Penn State (5-0) will play Texas A&M Tuesday night in the Championship of the Legends Classic in Brooklyn, NY while Pittsburgh (1-3) will play Oklahoma State in the third place game the same night.
-LSU Tigers 77, Michigan Wolverines 75
Michigan opened up its trip to the Maui Invitational on Monday night against LSU in what figured to be a competitive game. LSU entered as a top 100 team and Michigan had struggled eith some of its early season opponents.
The game ended up being a competitive one and coming down to the final minutes. Unfortunately, Michigan fell short. Charles Matthews and Moritz Wagner combined for 52 points, but it wasnt enough to grab the win. Michigan will try to regroup before their next game on Tuesday.