Clemson Cruises in its Season Opener for the 2015-16 Basketball Season

GREENVILLE, S.C. — The Clemson Tigers (1-0) defeated the North Carolina Central Eagles (0-1) in the Tigers' season opener in Greenville. Clemson went on a 21-0 run in the 1st half and never relinquished the big lead.

The Tigers' defense was the biggest factor in the game, holding the Eagles to 30.3% (17/56) shooting from the field. Clemson has now won 31-straight season openers. 5,742 fans were in attendance at Bon Secours Wellness Arena. The Well is serving as Clemson’s temporary home while Littlejohn Coliseum undergoes a $63 million renovation.

Head coach Brad Brownell said he was proud of the strength of play that the Tigers displayed throughout the game.

“We were strong from the beginning, had control of the game and never let [NCCU] take a run,” he said. “I thought our guys
executed well and made good decisions. I am proud of the way the guys played tonight.”

The Tigers were rocking The Well with their aggressive defense. They tallied nine total blocks, with center Landry Nnoko tying his career high with six. Friday’s game was the first time in two years, to the day, that Clemson held a team to 40 points or less.

Blossomgame ignited the team with his energy and athleticism. He opened up the scoring after catching an alley-oop from Donte
Grantham. Blossomgame had two early three-pointers and helped the team open up a 38-16 lead in the first half of play, scoring 16 by himself. Grantham hit two consecutive three-point field goals which helped the Tigers to 21 consecutive points. Grantham finished
in double figures with 11, as did junior point guard Avry Holmes.

The Tigers took their biggest lead (36-point margin) of the night inside the final minute, after walk-on Lyles Davis had a
steal and assist to fellow freshman Ty Hudson. Also turning in a strong second half was Sidy Djitte, who scored a career-high nine points, going 3-3 from the floor. Gabe DeVoe scored all nine of his points in the second frame as well.

The Tigers shot 44.7% from the field, 34.8% from three and 87.0% from the line.
Jaron Blossomgame posted 18 points, 4 rebounds and 2 blocks in 28 minutes. Blossomgame's energy in the 1st half sparked the 21-0 run. Donte Grantham and Avry Holmes also scored in double-figures with 11 points each, including Grantham shooting 3/6 from three. Landry Nnoko posted 7 points, 9 rebounds and 6 blocks in 21 minutes. Sidy Djitte posted a career-high 9 points.

“We were strong from the beginning, had control of the game and never let (NC Central) take a run,” head coach Brad Brownell said. “I thought our guys executed well and made good decisions. I'm proud of the way the guys played tonight.”


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