UofL BASKETBALL | Freshmen come up big in season opening win

11/12/2017 05:14 PM

The no. 16 Louisville men’s basketball team (1-0, 0-0) showed grit in Sunday’s season opening victory over visiting George Mason (1-1, 0-0). The Cards trailed at halftime, but bounced back in the second half to escape the KFC Yum! Center with a 72-61 win over the Patriots.

The win comes as a relief to the Cardinals players after six weeks of intense practice, amidst multiple scandal investigations. Perhaps more than the players though, acting head coach David Padgett has the first regular season win under his belt as the man in charge of the program.

U of L struggled to find its shot early in the game, making just 8-of-28 (28.6%) from the field, including 1-of-10 attempted 3-pointers. The poor shooting early put the Cards in a three point hole at the end of the first period.

The Cardinals’ offense in the second half was a different story. Louisville shot 70 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes, which included seven made 3-pointers.

Five of those second half threes were courtesy of two Card freshmen. Freshman wing Jordan Nwora made three, and freshman guard Darius Perry added two, providing a much-needed spark to the offense. Nwora finished the game with 10 points and three rebounds, while Perry was a perfect 3-of-3 from the field, 8-of-8 from the free throw line, ending the night with 17 points.

Junior wing Deng Adel was the top scorer for the home team. In 39 minutes on the floor, he finished with 20 points, four rebounds, three assists, and two blocks. Senior forward Anas Mahmoud also added two blocks to the stat sheet, and recorded a team-high nine rebounds.

Up next for George Mason is and Binghamton on Thursday. U of L returns to the court the following night, hosting Nebraska-Omaha at the KFC Yum! Center at 7:00 p.m. ET.

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