For the 11th consecutive season, the University of Louisville begins the season 1-0. The Cardinals built a 13-point halftime lead and cruised to a 81-68 victory over Minnesota in the Armed Forces Classic held in Puerto Rico.
The game featured was lengthy as the two teams combined for 59 fouls and 75 free throws. U of L had three score in double-figures and outrebounded the Golden Gophers 37-35
The 8th-ranked Cardinals were led by All-American forward Montrezl Harrell. Harrell, who opened the game with a three-pointer, was a force throughout the contest - inside and out. The junior scored a career-high 30 points, connecting on 9 of 12 from the floor, including 3 of 4 beyond the arc. He also connected on 9 of 10 free throws. His offensive output is the fourth highest total in a season opener in school history, trailing only Wes Unseld (45), Everick Sullivan (35) and Al Vilcheck (31). Harrell also totaled 7 rebounds and 2 steals.
Sophomore guard Terry Rozier added 18 points on 7 of 12 shooting, while also recording 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 steals. Senior guard Chris Jones scored 13, to go with 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals.
Freshman Chinanu Onuaku received the start at center, but was unable to remain on the floor for long stretches and fouled out with 3 rebounds. Wayne Blackshear saw limited time after picking up three quick fouls and finished with 7 points and 4 rebounds.
Louisville received just 12 points from the bench, with freshman guard Quentin Snider scoring 7, while also collecting 4 rebounds.
The win marks the second time that Rick Pitino has defeated a team coached by his son Richard. He won the first meeting when Richard was in his first year as a head coach at Florida International three seasons ago.
Up next for Louisville is a home contest against Jacksonville State on Monday night at the KFC Yum! Center.