FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 18, 2015
The 2015 CBE Hall of Fame Classic continued with Host Round games at two of the four host teams that will be travelling to Kansas City, MO to compete in five days at Sprint Center. North Carolina completed its second Host Round site games by taking on Wofford, and Northwestern opened its Host Round play with a contest against Fairfield.
North Carolina took advantage of their size and outscored Wofford 50-18 in the paint and outrebounded the Terriers 42-25 leading to a 14-3 advantage in second chance points as they marched to a 78-58 victory in front of a home crowd at the Dean E. Smith Center
The Terriers battled with the top-ranked Tar Heels early and held a 7-6 lead with three minutes elapsed in the first half. UNC then took the lead for good on a jumper in the paint by senior forward Brice Johnson and then slowly widened their lead out to ten points with 8:01 left in the half. Wofford would battle back and go on an 11-2 run over the next five minutes, capped by a jumper by senior forward Justin Gordon, and trailed by just one at the 3:01 mark. The Tar Heels (3-0) would score the final four points of the half and would take a 34-29 lead into the locker room.
In the second half, UNC again stretched their lead out to 11 points, but the Terriers (0-2) would not go away and mounted a balanced attack as six different players scored during a 16-8 run that cut the deficit to just three with 13:36 left. North Carolina would then use the formula they had used all night scoring on a dunk, two offensive rebounds, and converting two steals into layups in a 14-3 run that put the game away as they coasted to the 20-point win.
North Carolina was led by a trio of 16-point scorers: sophomore guard Joel Berry II, junior forward Kennedy Meeks, and Brice Johnson, who notched a double-double as he also grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds. Junior forward Isaiah Hicks also chipped in with 12 points off the bench. Wofford had four scorers in double figures led by junior guard Jaylen Allen’s 15 points. Senior forward Justin Gordon knocked in 12, senior guard Spencer Collins scored 11, and freshman guard Fletcher Magee came off the bench to score ten points as well.
Although Northwestern only trailed for 1:40 of the game and held a 16 point lead in the second half, the Wildcats were forced to hold off Fairfield for a 79-72 win at Welsh Ryan Arena in Evanston, IL.
After the early deficit, Northwestern took the lead on a jumper by senior center Alex Olah and stretched its lead out to 13 points before going to the locker room with a ten-point lead, 39-29. The Wildcats pushed their advantage out to 16 points, but with 12:32 remaining, the Stags began their push. Fairfield went on a 17-4 run over the next 5:30, and after a layup by reserve freshman forward Matija Milin, the Stags trailed by only three, 61-58, with 7:02 left to play. With three minutes remaining, the deficit still stood at three, but Fairfield’s sophomore guard Tyler Nelson missed a three-pointer to tie, the first of three straight misses and four unsuccessful possessions by the Stags. Northwestern’s sophomore guard Bryant McIntosh scored five straight points on a jumper and a three-point play and pushed the lead back to eight, 73-65, with 52 seconds remaining. The Wildcats (2-0) then made six of eight free throws down the stretch to close out the victory. In the end, it was Northwesten’s ability to capitalize on 14 Stag turnovers and score 23 points off those turnovers that made the difference in the seven-point win.
McIntosh led all scorers with 20 points while senior guard Tre Demps added 14, freshman forward Aaron Falzon scored 13, and Olah chipped in with 11 points for the Wildcats. Fairlfield (0-3) had four double-figure scorers led by senior forward Marcus Gilbert who recorded a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds. Freshman guard Curtis Cobb came off the bench to score 13 while freshman forward Jonathan Kasibabu scored 12 and Nelson added 11 to the Stag total.
About the CBE Hall of Fame Classic
The CBE Hall of Fame Classic is named after the College Basketball Experience, the award-winning and highly interactive college basketball fan facility adjacent to Sprint Center, which also features the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. Opened in October 2007, the College Basketball Experience is the nation's only facility that celebrates, in its entirety, the sport of men's collegiate basketball. The National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame hosts an Induction Celebration on the Friday before the tournament, celebrating Hall of Fame collegiate careers. The tournament, in partnership with the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), was initially established in 2001 as the Guardians Classic.
Founded in 1927, the NABC, since its inception, has acted as a guardian of the game of basketball by furthering the best interests of the game as well as the players and coaches who participate. The NABC engages in many efforts to enhance the college basketball experience for players, coaches and fans.
The CBE Hall of Fame Classic is produced by Blue Ridge Sports & Entertainment, Inc., www.blueridgesports.com. Blue Ridge Sports & Entertainment, Inc. is a sports management firm based in the Shenandoah Valley city of Winchester, Virginia.
To find out more, visit: www.cbehalloffameclassic.com and follow us on Twitter @CBEHOFClassic.
Liz Woerth, Blue Ridge Sports & Entertainment, Inc.