Smith, St. Benedict's too much for Terry, Reynolds

TRENTON, N.J. -- Somewhat forgotten in the wake of LeBron's career night at the Primetime Shootout was a pretty phenomenal match up in its own right, despite the fact that it wouldn't be featured on SportsCenter.

In the final game on the Saturday schedule, Winston Salem (NC) Reynolds and New Brunswick (NJ) St. Benedict's squared off, pitting a pair of future Tar Heels, Reyshawn Terry and Justin Bohlander, against one of UNC's top junior targets in J.R. Smith. Youth was served in this game, though, as Smith and St. Benedict's downed the Demons 69-55 behind 20 points from UMass-bound guard Art Bowers.

Reynolds came out of the gates much stronger than they did yesterday against St. Anthony's, leading 32-30 at the break behind 10 first half points from Terry, who was guarded by Smith for much of the half.

"In the first half, they came out a lot stronger than us, but we're a second half team. Whenever we're down, and we know somebody's trying to punch us in the face, we're going to stand up and fight," Smith said.

And fight they did. A defensive switch put Bowers on Terry, freeing up Smith to lurk in passing lanes and provide help defense. Both moves helped to slow Reynolds' down and create easy scoring opportunities for St. Benedict's, including some monster dunks from 6-9 power forward Stanley Branch. By the time the horn sounded on the third quarter, St. Benedict's had built an 11-point lead that they would not relinquish before cruising through the final period to the 14 point victory.

Terry finished with 13 points on 5-14 from the floor (0-1 3pt, 3-4 FT), 4 rebounds, 3 steals, and 1 block, while Smith, whose shot wasn't falling, showed the ability to impact the game in other ways, finishing with 9 points (3-10 FT, 2-6 3pt, 1-2 FT), 4 assists, 3 rebounds, 2 steals, and 1 block. "If I know my shots aren't falling, I try to pick it up and help [my teammates]," Smith said. "I try to play defense and get my teammates the ball more."

Bohlander struggled with foul trouble throughout the game, finishing with 2 points, 2 steals, 1 rebound, and 1 assist.

Even in the loss, Terry made a strong impression on Smith, who still claims UNC as his leader ahead of Louisville, NC State, Duke, and Pittsburgh -- and plans on beginning his visits after the season.

"[Reyshawn] is a great player, he's a great competitor," Smith said. "He's a tremendous player – I've never seen anybody like him. He's strong, he can shoot, go to the rack--he's an all-around player."

Might these two opponents be future teammates in Chapel Hill?

"When we get to Carolina together, I'm sure we'll be great friends," Smith added, completely unsolicited and without a shred of flippancy.

While the possibility of wearing the same uniform on the college level remains to be seen, this night spent on separate sidelines belonged to Smith and St. Benedict's, who sent Reynolds home with an 0-2 record in Trenton.

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