Josh Verlin (@jmverlin)
It’s Holiday Tournament Week.
Over the next seven days, most of the City 6 men’s and women’s programs will be traveling the country — and in some cases, a little beyond — to participate in various events, playing either two or three games in locations from Anchorage, Alaska to Montego Bay, Jamaica, and multiple points in between. Mixed in between those are a few other one-off showcase games, and other assorted home games and road trips.
Here’s a roundup of Friday’s six games involving City 6 men’s and women’s squads, and a schedule of tomorrow’s matchups:
MBB: Wake Forest 75, La Salle 63
Another big outing by senior wing Josh Nickelberry wasn’t backed by quite enough support from his teammates, as the Explorers fell to the Demon Deacons in the semifinals of the Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic, held in Montego Bay. Nickelberry scored 24 points, his third 20-point outing in four games for La Salle (2-2), shooting 6-of-11 from downtown (6-13 overall) and 6-of-6 from the foul line for his season-high total, doing so without committing a turnover in 35 minutes of action.
La Salle trailed Wake Forest (4-0) by just two at the break and led by one with 15 minutes to go, but the Demon Deacons controlled the next stretch, out-scoring the Explorers 29-10 over the next 10 minutes, putting the game out of reach. Tyree Appelby led four Wake Forest players in double figures with 23 points; West Chester East product Andrew Carr was one of them, finishing with 10 points and six rebounds in 34 minutes.
No other La Salle player finished with more than eight points, as Fran Dunphy went with a big starting lineup that included both Hassan and Fousseyni Drame plus Mamadou Doucoure, who only played six minutes. The Explorers committed 16 turnovers, and Wake Forest outscored 36-16 in bench points. La Salle will face Georgetown (2-2) in the consolation game on Sunday at noon.
Khalif Battle (above) bounced back with 24 points as Temple beat Rutgers on Friday at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. (Photo: Jack Verdeur/CoBL)
MBB: Temple 72, Rutgers 66
The unpredictability of Temple’s young season continued with an impressive (almost) wire-to-wire victory for the Owls (2-2), who bounced back quite nicely after a loss to Vanderbilt earlier in the week that also brought some post-game dramatics; that all came after they lost to Wagner and then beat Villanova. The Scarlet Knights (3-1) only led once, at 6-5 three minutes in, but otherwise the Owls played front-runner, going up as many as 19 late in the first half; Rutgers got the lead down to six with seven minutes left, but Temple pulled back up by a dozen with 1:32 left on a Khalif Battle triple which sealed the win.
Battle, who was involved in that post-Vanderbilt controversy after only playing 19 minutes and scoring two points, and then got called out by his coach afterwards, bounced back with a 24-point night, shooting 8-of-17 from the floor; center Jamille Reynolds had his best game in his brief time in a Temple uniform with 17 points and nine rebounds, while Hysier Miller had 12 plus 10 assists and Zach Hicks added 10.
This game was played as part of the Hall of Fame Showcase; the Owls next participate in the two-game Empire Classic, beginning with a matchup against St. John’s (4-0) on Monday at 9:30 PM at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
MBB: Drexel 85, Arcadia 45
Not much surprise here: the Dragons welcomed the Knights to their den, and dispatched their D-III opponent with ease. Zach Spiker used the opportunity to get some of his players their first significant collegiate action, including freshmen Kobe Magee (12 points, 5 rebounds in 20 minutes) and Cole Hargrove (8 points, 5 rebounds in 12 minutes), while Garfield Turner got his first start with Amari Williams unavailable, held out with knee soreness.
Lamar Oden Jr. (13 points, 10 rebounds) and Turner (10 points, 10 rebounds) both nabbed double-doubles, while Mate Okros also grabbed 10 boards as Drexel out-rebounded Arcadia 51-25. Arcadia standouts Jalen Watkins (14 points) and Justin Money (13 points, 6 rebounds) both acquitted themselves well, but no other Arcadia player scored more than five points.
Drexel (2-1) next heads out to Estero, Fla. for the three-game Gulf Coast Showcase, beginning with a game Monday against UT-Arlington (2-2).
MBB: West Virginia 92, Penn 58
The odds were already going to stacked against the Quakers as they traveled out to the Mountain State, and then star junior guard Jordan Dingle was a late scratch with a leg injury. So things got a little ugly down in Morgantown, as the Mountaineers (4-0) used a 17-2 run midway through the first half to go up 28-9, and then an 11-1 spurt over the halftime to extend the advantage to 59-32, and they were no doubt about how the rest was going to go.
Clark Slajchert led Penn (1-4) with 20 points, while junior wing Max Martz had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Sophomore guard Reese McMullin got his first collegiate start in Dingle’s stead, scoring four points in 13 minutes. All 14 West Virginia players who saw action scored, led by Erik Stevenson’s 20 points in just 16 minutes of work; the Mountaineers forced 18 turnovers and turned that into a 21-4 advantage in points off them, shooting a blistering 56% overall and 52% (12-of-23) from 3-point range.
Penn’s next game is also on the road, next Tuesday at Lafayette (0-4). It then returns to the Palestra for three consecutive games against Hartford, Colgate and Delaware (Nov. 25-27).
MBB: Michigan State 73, Villanova 71
A valiant comeback effort led by a stellar night from Eric Dixon wasn’t enough, as another poor shooting night from the Wildcats cost them an opportunity for a big non-conference win. Dixon tied his career high with 24 points, shooting 9-of-14 from the floor and 3-of-7 from 3-point range, and grabbed nine rebounds with three assists in 36 minutes. Brandon Slater 916 points, 6 rebounds) and Caleb Daniels (13 points) joined him in double figures, but Daniels was just 1-of-8 from the 3-point range.
That set the tone for a Wildcats squad that was 8-of-29 from beyond the arc, including 2-of-13 in the first half, after which Michigan State (3-1) led by 10. The Spartan lead was still double-digits with under five minutes left when a 3-point play by Brandon Slater and Daniels’ only triple cut it to four; a Dixon 3-pointer with 1:40 left brought it back to four, and one by Longino with 49 seconds left made it a 72-71 game.
Coatesville native A.J. Hoggard, who played his first two years of high school at Archbishop Carroll before transferring to Huntington Prep (W.Va.), was one of four MSU players in double figures, finishing with 13 points, 10 assists and 8 rebounds.
WBB: La Salle 83, Pepperdine 81 (OT)
Without starting point guard Molly Masciantonio, who injured her knee in the Explorers’ win over Drexel on Tuesday, La Salle went up to the Great Alaska Shootout and outlasted Pepperdine, needing five extra minutes — and all of them — to get it done. Charity Shears made the biggest play thus far of her only season in a La Salle uniform, the grad transfer coming up with a put-back bucket with 0.5 seconds left to deliver the victory.
La Salle (3-1), which won for the third game in a row, got 29 points from Claire Jacobs, who shot 9-of-20 from the floor, and 16 from Kayla Spruill, who got going as the game went on. Mountain MacGillivray played 11 players eight minutes or more, with Jaye Haynes scoring six points in 23 minutes in her return to the starting lineup.
The Explorers will play either UC Riverside or Alaska-Anchorage in Saturday’s championship game.
Saturday, November 19
WBB: Drexel vs. Maryland-Eastern Shore (2 PM)
WBB: La Salle vs. TBD (Anchorage, Ak.)
Sun., November 20
MBB: La Salle vs. Georgetown (12 PM, Montego Bay, Jamaica)
WBB: Saint Joseph’s @ Vanderbilt (2 PM)
WBB: Temple vs. Villanova (5 PM)