Wake Forest 75, Loyola 63
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- C.J. Harris scored 20 points, Travis McKie added 19 and Wake Forest beat Loyola (Md.) 75-63 on Friday night in the season opener for both teams.
The Deacons survived despite suffering through 22-of-46 shooting (47.8 percent) from the free-throw line. They actually shot better from the field, going 24 of 49 (49 percent).
Wake Forest led by as many as 11 in the first half but needed to go on a 7-0 spurt midway through the second half to regain control after Loyola fought back to tie the game 48-48. The Deacons also finished the game with a 12-6 run.
Dylon Cormier led Loyola with 13 points, and Shane Walker and Justin Drummond scored 12 each. The Greyhounds had four players foul out and committed 34 personal fouls for the game.
Wake Forest led 31-26 at halftime, after leading by as many as 11 in the first half. Harris had five points in a 10-0 spurt over a four-minute span late in the half to put Wake up 29-18, but the Greyhounds then scored the last five points of the half to cut the deficit to five.
Loyola then fought back to tie the game at 48-48 on a 3-pointer by Erik Etherly with 10:36 remaining. But the Deacons responded with two free throws by McKie, a free throw from Anthony Fields and baskets from Carson Desrosiers and Nikita Mescheriakov to regain control.
Loyola never got closer than four points again.
Harris, a 6-foot-3 junior, was 6 of 9 from the field but just 6 of 12 from the line. He missed his first five free-throw attempts. McKie, a 6-foot-7 sophomore, shrugged off an ankle sprain and was 5 of 10 from the field and 8 of 12 from the line.
The Deacons suited up just eight scholarship players, including three freshmen. The roster was decimated during the offseason after Ari Stewart transferred, Melvin Tabb was kicked off the team, Ty Walker was suspended for the first semester and J.T. Terrell left the team.
Wake Forest will host Georgia Southern next Wednesday, while Loyola will host Coppin State on Monday.
No. 14 Xavier 74, Morgan State 63
CINCINNATI -- No. 14 Xavier was missing its star player and four players reached double figures for Morgan State, but that wasn't enough to keep the Bears from falling 74-63 to the Musketeers in the regular-season opener for both teams Friday night.
Mark Lyons scored 22 points and Dezmine Wells added 12 in his college debut as Xavier overcame the absence of its top player, suspended senior guard Tu Holloway, to win its 22nd consecutive regular-season opener. The Musketeers are 12-0 in season-openers at the Cintas Center, where they will play their first four games of the season.
Morgan State coach Todd Bozeman watched nine of the 10 players who played for Xavier score at least two points.
"Coming in, we heard they had a lot of depth, and they did," Bozeman said. "If they were a football team, they'd be in the Big East."
Kevin Thompson scored 14 points, 10 in the second half, while DeWayne Jackson and Justin Black each added 11 and Aric Brooks finished with 10 for Morgan State. Jackson scored all but one of his points in the first half.
Ian Chiles just missed double figures with nine points while limiting Xavier senior Kenny Frease to 10 points. Frease fouled out with 4:21 left in the game.'
"We're still growing as a team," Bozeman said. "We did a good job on Frease, fouling him out. We know they didn't have Holloway but we still did some growing. Ian Chiles, the (7-foot-2) kid, didn't play a lot for us last year. For him to do what he did shows a lot of growth in our team."
Holloway, a third-team All-American and the Atlantic 10 Player of the Year last season, was suspended for one game by the NCAA for participating in two leagues this past summer, when only one is permitted. The secondary violation was reported by Xavier in August.
Six Xavier fans standing in the front row of the student section had "Free Tu" written out in body paint on their chests.
Wells started his first college game and scored 10 points in the first half, eight while leading the Musketeers back from a 22-12 deficit to a 40-35 halftime lead. He made a 3-pointer from the left corner with 4 seconds left in the half.
Wells was helped off the court with 9:04 left in the game after suffering cramps in his right leg.
Lyons made two 3-pointers while scoring Xavier's first eight points and 10 of the Musketeers first 14 of the second half as they opened up a 54-37 lead. He finished with 14 points in the second half.
No. 13 Kansas 100, Towson 54
LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Thomas Robinson had a double-double, Travis Releford added 14 points and No. 13 Kansas romped past outmanned Towson State 100-54 on Friday night in a season opener that was lopsided from the start.
Robinson, a 6-foot-10 junior getting his first chance to start with the departure to the NBA of the vaunted Morris twins, had 18 points, 11 rebounds and four assists in what counts as the opening round of the EA Sports Maui Invitational.
Point guard Tyshawn Taylor, suspended along with guard Elijah Johnson for the two exhibition games, added 12 points and four assists for the seven-time defending Big 12 champions. Connor Teahan had 11 points on 4-for-5 shooting and in three games is 17 for 21.
Robert Nwankwo had 14 points for the Tigers, who are one of the youngest teams in the nation and coming off a 4-26 season. Kris Walden and Marcus Damas both had 11 points.
With Releford and Johnson hitting two 3-pointers each, the Jayhawks scored 35 of the game's first 45 points, capped by Johnson's steal and driving dunk at the 9:58 mark.
But the Jayhawks got sloppy and the inexperienced Tigers took advantage, fashioning an 8-0 run and outscoring Kansas 19-18 to slice the halftime lead to 53-29.
Jervon Pressley's basket got the lead back down into the 20s at 71-43, but after Walden's 3-pointer made it 73-46 early in the second half, the Jayhawks unleashed an 11-0 run with Teahan hitting his third straight 3-pointer and 7-footer Jeff Withey fighting under the Kansas basket to dunk for an 84-46 lead.
The Tigers, who claim to be the only team in the country returning only one letter winner, had 23 turnovers and were never able to compete with the taller, quicker Big 12 co-favorites.
In the first 10 minutes Robinson brought the crowd to its feet with a variety of moves, including a big dunk right after freshman Naadir Tharpe had completed a three-point play. Teahan had a basket and added a 3-pointer to put the Jayhawks on top 65-35 early in the second half. A few minutes later, Teahan's 3-pointer made it 78-43.
Walden stole the ball from Taylor and drove in for a layup to help fuel Towson State's late surge in the first half, followed by two field goals by Nwankwo. Taylor and Tharpe hit 3-pointers in the final minutes for the Jayhawks, who won their 10th straight season opener and raised coach Bill Self's record at Allen Fieldhouse to 130-7.
Navy 78, Longwood 70
FARMVILLE, Va. -- Jordan Sugars scored 21 points to lead five players in double figures as Navy held off Longwood 78-70 on Friday night in the season opener for both teams.
James Loupos, Isaiah Roberts, and J.J. Avila all scored 11 points and Brennan Wyatt added 10 points for Navy. Sugars grabbed eight rebounds and Avila tallied nine to help Navy hold a 40-33 rebounding edge.
Longwood fought back to tie the score 63-63 with 5:30 to play, but the Midshipmen outscored the Lancers 15-7 over the final 4:39.
The Lancers played sound defense, forcing 14 Navy turnovers. However, Longwood shot poorly from the line, missing nine free throws -- including seven in the second half, in a game that saw 22 lead changes.
Tristan Carey led all Lancer scorers with 17 points while Jeremiah Bowman and Antwan Carter each scored 13 points.
With the win, Navy improves to 9-0 all-time against Longwood.
Penn 59, UMBC 45
Zach Rosen scored 26 points to carry Penn to a 59-45 win over UMBC in the season opener for both teams on Friday night.
Rosen was 10 of 16 from the field including 4 of 6 from 3-point range. Without Rosen's sharp-shooting, the Quakers made only 11of 35 field goal attempts and were 2 of 12 from behind the arc. Tyler Bernardini was the only other Penn player in double figures with 10 points.
The Quakers' defense made the difference, forcing 20 turnovers and holding the Retrievers without a 3-point field goal on 11 attempts. The Retrievers shot only 33.3 percent from the field (16 of 48) for the game.
Leading 28-25 at halftime, Penn opened the second half with a 9-0 run as the lead grew to 37-25.
Chase Plummer led the Retrievers with 15 points, but was only 5 of 14 from the field.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times