For the second time in the last three years the University of Miami Men’s basketball squad (5-0) won an early season tournament. UM defeated South Carolina in the championship game Sunday night 85-70.
Despite the fact that the Canes committed 23 turnovers, they out rebounded the Game Cocks 57-31. Tournament MVP, senior Dwayne Collins, led all players with 15 rebounds and recorded his 16th career double-double has he added 17 points as well.
“It feels great to win,” head coach Frank Haith said. “We hung in there after a slow start. We finally got in a rhythm. Everyone contributed which is what I like to see. We do not have one go to guy like a Jack McClinton but I do consider our center piece to be Dwayne Collins.”
Senior James Dews scored a career-high 22 points on 8-for-11 shooting in the finale.
The Canes were down 18-11 early in the first half but responded by going on an 11-0 run thanks to redshirt freshman Reggie Johnson’s spark. The 6’10″ 295 pound center lost 30 pounds this offseason thanks to a strict off season conditioning program and eating healthier.
Collins was excellent in the opening round game against Tulane Thursday afternoon. He carried the Canes to a 74-54 victory has tallied 22 points and 14 rebounds.
Friday afternoon redshirt sophomore Malcolm Grant scored a career high 18 points as the orange and green defeated UNC Wilmington 67-60. Senior Cyrus McGowan had a well rounded game grabbing nine rebounds, nine points and blocking a career high five shots.
The Hurricanes take on Florida Gulf Coast Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at the BankUnited Center. The game can be heard on 90.5 FM WVUM.
“I told these guys that we have to stay focused,” Haith said. “All the hard work will be lost if we don’t come out strong this week. These games are important.”
Justin Antweil may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.