LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - USC Upstate (1-5) had designs on pulling off the biggest upset of the young college basketball season. The Spartans led #2 UofL 43-40 with 14:07 left.
The Cards answered with a 21-2 run to remove all doubt in a 76-50 win.
“It shows the power of the three-point shot in college basketball,” UofL head coach Chris Mack said. “It can keep you in any game, fortunately we were able to find it within ourselves to clamp down, play much stronger, do a better job on the perimeter in the last 12 minutes to really gain the separation that we did.”
Jordan Nwora led the Cards with 28 points. He also pulled down nine rebounds. Dwayne Sutton was, as usual, the hardest playing player on the court. The Manual High grad finished with 9 points and a career-high 15 rebounds.
It was a Sutton three-pointer that tied the game at 43 and ignited the UofL run.
The run included a pair of three-pointers from Ryan McMahon, a triple from Darius Perry and dunks from David Johnson, Samuell Williamson, Nwora and Aidan Igiehon.
Johnson, a Trinity High grad, saw his first action of the season, after having shoulder surgery over the summer. He added another late dunk for four points in his three and a half minutes of action.
“It felt great,” Johnson said. “I’ve been itching to get out there and finally got to do it, so I think I’m only going to go up from here.”
Junior Malik Williams also saw his first action of the season. He had foot surgery over the summer. He had three points and three rebounds in five minutes of action.
“I just felt great,” Williams said.
The Cards improve to 5-0. They are back in action on Sunday night at 6 p.m. hosting Akron (3-1).