Trevor Booker scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to help the Tigers beat the Blue Demons 90-74 Friday in the San Juan Shootout.
``We didn't have an answer for Booker,'' DePaul coach Jerry Wainwright said. ``We physically were overpowered. I thought they absolutely manhandled us at every position.''
Booker, who went 10-of-12 from the free-throw line, was one of six players in double figures for the Tigers (10-0), who got 15 points from Cliff Hammonds and 14 from Demontez Stitt.
Clemson, who trailed by one at the break, took control by opening the second half with a 19-4 run, capped by Hammonds' 3-pointer that put the Tigers ahead 59-45 with 14:45 left. Stitt started the run with seven consecutive points.
``Today was an example of a game where if we don't ratchet down in the second half, we're in trouble. So it was good to see the team respond,'' Clemson coach Oliver Purnell said.
Booker, who had three blocks, also made two deflections to force DePaul turnovers during the Tigers' run at the start of the second half.
``In the second half I stepped up with more intensity, and we played more physical as a team,'' Booker said.
DePaul (2-7) answered with seven unanswered points, trimming the lead to 59-52 on a layup by Draelon Burns with 13:20 remaining. But the Blue Demons did not come any closer as the Tigers pulled away with 54 percent shooting in the second half.
``We hung in in the first half, but I thought they turned it up a little bit in the second half,'' Wainwright said.
Burns led DePaul with 27 points. Karron Clarke added 14 and Dar Tucker had 13.
Clemson was outrebounded on the offensive boards in the first half and finished with only a 33-32 edge in rebounding. Purnell said the biggest adjustment at halftime was to demand more toughness.
``We simply challenged our guys to not be out-toughed,'' he said.
Hammonds and Terrence Oglesby also combined for 8-of-11 shooting from behind the arc for Clemson.
``In the second, we decided to play defense the way Clemson plays defense,'' Hammonds said.
After trailing 18-11, DePaul rallied for a 37-31 lead on a layup by Will Walker. A late surge by Clemson tightened the lead to 41-40 at the break.
Clemson, which beat Puerto Rico-Mayaguez on Thursday night, finishes the tournament Saturday against Mississippi. DePaul takes on La Salle to close their San Juan Shootout.
No. 15 Clemson Knocks Off DePaul 90-74
We Are DePaul Top Stories
DePaul Officially Inks Paul Reed for 2017On the first day of the Spring signing period, Paul Reed, a 6-9 forward from Apopka, Florida officially signed with the Blue Demons.
We Are DePaul04/12/2017
Butz Named to Indiana All-Star TeamFuture Blue Demon Jaylen Butz was named to the 2017 IndyStar Indiana All-Star team roster released on Monday.
We Are DePaul04/10/2017
Garrett Named to ADA Scholar-Athlete TeamDePaul senior guard Billy Garrett Jr. was one of 10 players recognized on the 15th Annual Division I-AAA Athletics Directors Association (DI-AAA ADA) Scholar-Athlete Team.
We Are DePaul04/04/2017
Brian Bowen Considering DePaulWe caught up with 5-star recruit Brian Bowen II at the McDonald’s All-American Game in Chicago. We’ll breakdown where DePaul stands in the race for the forward in this report.
We Are DePaul03/29/2017
Garrett Named to NABC Good Works TeamDePaul senior guard Billy Garrett, Jr. will be honored at the Final Four in Phoenix this weekend as part of Allstate NABC Good Works team.
We Are DePaul03/29/2017