RU rebounds in second half for fourth victory
The Rutgers men’s basketball team rattled off its fourth consecutive victory and second straight road win yesterday in an 87-80 win at UNC-Greensboro.
Sophomore guards once again led the attack, as Eli Carter and Myles Mack paced the Scarlet Knights with 25 and 24 points, respectively.
Carter hit nine of his 15 field goal attempts, while Mack went 9-for-11 from the floor.
They did not waste any time scoring, netting Rutgers’ first 10 points in the opening three minutes.
The game marked the third in a row — all wins — Carter led the team in scoring.
The duo also combined for seven assists and six steals and scored more than half of the team’s points for the second game this season.
As a team, Rutgers (4-1) commanded the second half, outscoring the Spartans by 10 points and turning a three-point halftime deficit into a seven-point victory, despite struggles on the boards.
UNC-Greensboro out-rebounded the Knights, 40-30, overall and turned the ball over 16 times, contributing to the score, which remained close until the final minutes.
To combat that, Rutgers shot more than 57 percent from the field, while the Spartans shot only 42 percent.
Aside from the Knights’ two sophomore guards, the scoring was balanced, as six other players scored between five and eight points.
Eight points came courtesy of sophomore forward Kadeem Jack, who continued his upward trajectory.
He added two rebounds and a block and made four of his five free-throw attempts. The only blemish on his card were five turnovers.
Junior forward Wally Judge took a step forward from his game at Princeton in which he failed to record a point.
The Kansas State transfer responded by scoring seven points and tallying four rebounds.
Derrell Armstrong served as the biggest threat to end Rutgers’ winning streak. He tied Carter for a game-high 25 points of his own, hitting five of his eight attempts from beyond the arc.
Guard Trevis Simpson was the only other Spartan to score more than 10 points, dropping 16 in 32 minutes of play.
The win marked Rutgers’ first game after Thanksgiving and the first of three consecutive road games.
It takes the court next on Saturday, when it plays Mississippi in Oxford, Miss., as part of the Big East/SEC Challenge.
The Knights return to the tri-state area Dec. 8 to meet Iona at Madison Square Garden as part of the Holiday Festival Tournament.
They do not play another home game until Dec. 11, when they face George Washington.