Wave Erases 19-Point Deficit in 82-74 Win Over VMI

Tulane connected on 57.6 percent (34-of-59) of its shots, but it was the second half which was the difference. The Wave nailed 60.6 percent (20-of-33) of its shots while holding VMI to 45.8 percent (11-of-24) shooting in the half. Tulane also had just six second-half turnovers (17 overall) while forcing 13 Keydet miscues in the second half, after forcing just three in the first half

NEW ORLEANS, La. – Tulane University used pressure defense and hot shooting to erase a 19-point second-half deficit in a thrilling 82-74 victory over VMI in men's basketball action on Friday afternoon at Fogelman Arena.

Tulane (6-5) trailed 70-59 after VMI's Reggie Williams nailed a jumper with 4:39 to go, but the Green Wave exploded for an 18-0 run as Vincent Camper sparked the rally. The sophomore guard scored five points in the run, while blocking a shot and stealing an in-bounds pass in the Wave press. His foul-line jumper with 1:21 on the clock gave Tulane a 72-70 advantage, its first lead since the mid-point of the first half.

"Vincent is a guy that plays hard," Tulane coach Shawn Finney said. "He got on the court and he laid it on the line. I am happy for him because he needed a good game."

After Camper's jumper, freshman Taylor Rochestie picked off an in-bounds pass and hit one-of-two free throws and then another Keydet turnover was followed by a perfect Marcus Kinzer feed to Quincy Davis for a monster jam, his sixth dunk of the game. A missed three by VMI forced the Keydets to foul Kinzer, who knocked down both free throws and it was 77-70 with 28.7 clicks remaining.

"We had to play differently to find a way to win the game," Finney said. "We hadn't pressed much this year, but we needed it to change the tempo of the game; we were having trouble guarding in the halfcourt and we were tentative against the zone."

Rochestie added three more points from the line and Camper scored on a fast-break layup to cap the Green Wave scoring in the game.

Rochestie and Kinzer scored 30 of their 39 points in the second half as the Green Wave out-scored the Keydets, 51-30.

Rochestie finished with his second straight career-high, scoring 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting. He had 19 in Tuesday's win over VMI. Davis and Kinzer both added double-doubles as Davis scored 19 points with 10 rebounds and Kinzer tallied 17 points with 10 assists.

"Taylor has grown and he is playing with a lot of confidence," Finney said. "He has a good head on his shoulders and he knows how to play the game. He makes a coach's job easy."

After holding a 13-point lead at the break, VMI (5-4) continued to cruise in the second half, using a 10-4 run to open the half, building their game-high 19-point lead. However, the Green Wave chipped away, pulling within 10 on three occasions: at the 12:51 mark on a Davis dunk (59-49), at the 8:20 mark on a Kinzer fast-break layup (64-54), and on a hard-drive by Camper with 6:01 remaining (66-56). But the Wave could not break through until the big 18-0 run which put the game away.

"There were two points in the game where we buckled down and played the right way," Finney said. "From the 15-minute to the 10-minute mark and then from the four-minute mark to the end. Those two stretches won the game for us."

In the first half, Tulane was victimized by 11 turnovers as the Keydets built a 44-31 advantage, scoring 14 points off the Green Wave turnovers.

Tulane connected on 57.6 percent (34-of-59) of its shots, but it was the second half which was the difference. The Wave nailed 60.6 percent (20-of-33) of its shots while holding VMI to 45.8 percent (11-of-24) shooting in the half. Tulane also had just six second-half turnovers (17 overall) while forcing 13 Keydet miscues in the second half, after forcing just three in the first half.

"We had to change the flow of the game and take them out of their rhythm," Finney said.

VMI shot 49.2 percent (29-of-59) for the game. Tulane also held a 33-29 advantage on the glass, while out-doing the Keydets, 18-7, on fast-break points. The Wave also had a season-high eight blocks, four each by Davis and freshman David Gomez.

The Green Wave opens Conference USA play next Wednesday (Jan. 5) on the road at Saint Louis. The C-USA home opener for the Green Wave is Saturday, Jan. 8 against Marquette at 7 p.m. For ticket information, call 504-861-WAVE.


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