JMU basketball drops home opener to Detroit, 71-67
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Carlton Brundidge led all players with a career-high 22 points and Detroit kept JMU at bay in the closing minutes to down the Dukes 71-67 in JMU’s home opener on Tuesday evening at the Convocation Center.
Brundidge scored 22 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field along with 4-for-6 from the three-point arc. Juwan Howard, Jr. aided the cause with 15 points, seven rebounds and four assists while guard Jarod Williams chipped in 11 points.
Detroit was whistled for 31 personal fouls in the game, including 18 in the second half, but survived thanks to JMU going just 26-for-45 (58 percent) from the charity stripe.
Sophomore guard Charles Cooke (Trenton, N.J./Trenton Catholic) led four Dukes in double figures with 17 points. Graduate student Andrey Semenov (St. Petersburg, Russia/Blue Ridge School) added 14 points while freshmen Jackson Kent (High Point, N.C./High Point Christian) and Ivan Lukic (Loznica, Spain/ABCD Academy) each had 10.
It was a one-point game at the half, 33-32, but Detroit was able to pull ahead in the opening minutes, taking a 45-38 lead five minutes a quarter of the way into the period. The Titans further built the lead to its largest point of the game at 48-40 on a three by Williams.
Kent entered the game at the 13-minute mark and singlehandedly pulled the Dukes back into it. He started a personal 7-0 run with a three-pointer followed by a three-point play on a running layup and 1-of-2 free throws to make it a one-point game at 48-47.
After a three-minute scoring drought, Williams again stepped up with a three, this time making it 51-47 with 9:29 on the clock.
JMU still had one final push in the closing minutes. The Dukes got it to 67-63 with two minutes to go but committed a turnover on their next possession following a Detroit miss. Madison then cut it to three at 69-66 on a trey by Cooke with 28 seconds remaining.
The Titans missed the front end of a 1-and-1 free throw opportunity to give the Dukes a chance. Cooke was fouled and connected on one of his two attempts to make it a two-point game. However, Brundidge clinched the win for the visitors with a pair of fouls shots with 10 seconds remaining for the final score of 71-67.
Detroit shot 43 percent for the game and connected on nine three-point field goals (39 percent). The Dukes shot 40 percent from the field and 31 percent from the arc (5-for-16). The Titans enjoyed a 37-31 advantage on the glass.
JMU rode the momentum of the home crowd to jump out to scores of 6-0 and 13-5 in the opening minutes. However, Detroit used an 8-0 run to tie the game at 13-13. The Dukes sat in front 22-18 when the Titans took their first lead at the6:57 mark at 23-22.
UDM held onto the lead 26-23 until the Dukes got a pair of free throws from Cooke and a three-pointer from Semenov. Later, Howard’s jumper with 37 seconds remaining gave the Titans a 33-30 lead. Two free throws by Lukic brought the Dukes back within a point at 33-32 at the half.
Lukic had all of his 10 points in the half followed by Semenov with nine. Brundidge led all players with 15 for Detroit. Both teams struggled at the foul line with the Dukes going 9-for-18 in the period (50 percent) and Titans 9-for-14 (64 percent).
JMU returns to the road on Saturday with a 3 p.m. game visiting Valparaiso.