Tulane holds off LIU Brooklyn, 102-96

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NEW ORLEANS – Six Green Wave players scored in double-figures, as the Tulane men’s basketball team won its first season opener since 2013 with a 102-96 victory over LIU Brooklyn on Friday night at Avron B. Fogelman Arena in the Devlin Fieldhouse.

Cameron Reynolds scored a team-high 24 points and Melvin Frazier added 19 more, while Jordan Cornish had 17 points, six rebounds and three assists. Samir Sehic compiled his first double-double comprising 17 points and 14 rebounds on 7-for-11 shooting off the bench.

Ray Ona Embo added 11 points and handed out a career-high nine assists, while Colin Slater chipped in 10 points, four rebounds, two assists and a pair of blocks as a reserve. He also shot 3-for-3 from the field and made both of his 3-point attempts.

Raiquan Clark led LIU Brooklyn (0-1) with a game-high 34 points on 14-for-20 shooting overall. Joel Hernandez added 23 points and six boards.

Tulane (1-0) had a quick 4-3 lead to start, but the Blackbirds erupted on an 8-0 run, forcing the Green Wave to call a timeout at the 16:21 mark. Tulane responded with a 14-4 run, capped by an Ona Embo 3-pointer, forcing LIU Brooklyn to call timeout with 12:27 left in the first half.

The Blackbirds drew within one point, 18-17, but the Green Wave expanded its lead to double digits and led by as many as 17, before taking a 52-28 lead into the locker rooms at halftime.

The Green Wave shot 19-for-38 (.500) overall, 7-for-17 (.412) from 3-point range and 7-for-9 (.778) at the free throw line in the first half, while the Blackbirds went 16-for-34 (.471) from the floor, 3-for-10 (.300) from deep and made three of four attempts at the foul stripe. Tulane held a 27-12 advantage on the boards and a 9-0 margin on second chance points through the first 20 minutes of action.

The Olive and Blue made nine of their first 12 shots in the second half and led 73-58 with 13 minutes remaining, but LIU Brooklyn chipped away down the stretch and drew as close as two points, 98-96, on a desperation 3-pointer made by Zach Coleman with 23 seconds to go. Tulane sunk its free throws and hung on for the six-point win.

The Green Wave finished the night shooting 36-for-70 (.514) as a team, 9-for-24 (.375) beyond the arc and 21-for-26 (.808) at the free throw line, while the Blackbirds went 38-for-76 (.500) overall, 9-for-26 (.346) from deep and 11-for-13 (.846) at the stripe.

Tulane owned a 52-46 scoring advantage in the paint, a 46-32 rebounding margin, won, 17-2, on second chance baskets and a 27-9 margin in bench points, despite being outscored 17-4 on the fast break and 17-10 off turnovers.

Tulane remains at home to host Southeastern Louisiana on Monday, Nov. 13 at 7 p.m.

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