Ike Diogu got the start for the first time this year, coming off a slight strain/tear of his hip muscle. He looked rusty in the early going, with his shot coming up short on a few occasions. However, his fellow front court starter, Keith Wooden, picked up the scoring slack with 11 first half points. Wooden also got the most playing time logging 26 minutes. Ike finished the first stanza with eight points and six rebounds. In the first period, the Devils shot 50% from the field.
The Travelers, mostly made up of European players, hung with the Devils for most of the first half. Ed Williams' 11 points, Maksym "The Ukrain Train" Shtein's 12 points, and 56.5% shooting from the floor kept the score within four points at half. The Sun Devils led 40-36.
Similar to the first exhibition game, ASU picked up the intensity and focus after the intermission. The offense seemed to flow better in the second half and Ike got himself involved more. He hit a three, made intermediate jumpers, made a sweet spin move to the hoop for a lay in, and generally played like the Ike that Sun Devil fans have grown to expect. He ended his night with 28 points and ten rebounds. He was 10-13 from the floor and a perfect 7-7 from the line. Not bad for a guy playing in his first real action of the season.
Other Sun Devils scoring in double figures were Allen Morill with 12, Steve Moore and Tron Smith with points ten each. Moore was flirting with a triple double recording a team high eight assist, along with six caroms.
When the clock read "0:00," Brandon Goldman was in the game and the Devils won by 20 points, 94-74. Now the real games begin.
Jumpin' Joe Caldwell was at the game…Keith Wooden's hair is now in cornrows and he looks even more like a young Mario Bennett…unlike Mario Bennett, Keith likes to pass the ball and made some very good kick outs from the post and passes in high-low offensive sets…Jason Braxton looked good for a second game, running the team well and dishing out some sweet dimes…the Basketball Travelers had only scored two points in the second half with over 5 minutes elapsed…the student section's Devil's Den did a good job of making noise in what was otherwise a library…Before the game, a moment of silence was held to remember former ASU men's basketball head coach Ned Wulk and former ASU faculty member Tom DeMassa, both of whom passed away over the weekend.
Devils Cruise on by Travelers
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