UB dominates Toledo in 110-80 victory

East High’s Dontay Caruthers does up for two of his 10 points on the night. (Photo:Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports)

Courtesy of UBBulls.com

BUFFALO, NY – The No. 19 University at Buffalo men’s basketball team scored 65 points in the second half on Tuesday night, shooting 62.2 percent from the field in a dominating 110-80 win over Toledo in what was a rematch of the 2018 MAC Championship game.  The Bulls are now 14-1 on the year and 2-0 to begin MAC play.

The Bulls never trailed in the contest as it was tied just once at 2-2.  UB did nearly everything right in the game, taking down a Toledo team that entered the contest with a 12-2 record, including winning 12 of its 13 non-conference games. The Bulls shot 51.8 percent from the floor, including 50% from three-point range.  UB also did an excellent job taking care of the ball with just seven turnovers for the night to go along with 25 assists.

Senior Jeremy Harris led four Buffalo players in double figures with a career high 34 points, scoring 21 of those in the first half.  With the Bulls leading 5-4 early, UB scored 13 straight points, including nine of those coming from Harris, who hit three triples during the run. Another three from Harris extended the Buffalo lead to 31-16 with 9:16 left and the Bulls led by as many as 20 in the first half following a fast break layup from Harris, putting UB ahead, 44-24.  Toledo was able to make a late run to end the first, pulling within 45-32 at the break.

The Rockets scored the first five points of the second half to pull within eight, but the Bulls got a huge three pointer from sophomore Jayvon Graves, igniting a quick 7-0 run, extending the lead back to 52-37.  UB continued to lead 64-51 when the Bulls went on another 13-0 run, capped off on a fast break dunk from junior Davonta Jordan, giving Buffalo the 77-51 lead with 11:19 left.

Senior Nick Perkins drilled a three pointer with 6:54 left putting the Bulls ahead 98-63, while a layup from freshman Jeenathan Williams put UB over the century mark for the second time this year.  A triple by fellow freshman Ronaldo Segu gave the Bulls their largest lead of the night at 103-65 with 5:20 remaining and Toledo never pulled any closer than within 28.

“I thought our intensity out of the gate was really good.  We wanted to come out and punch them in the mouth and for the first four to eight minutes, I thought we did a really good job of that,” said head coach Nate Oats.  “I wasn’t happy with the way we closed the half, but our offense was clicking in the second half. For a while there our defense was as bad as our offense was good, but once we figured that out, we were able to blow that thing wide open.”

The Bulls got points from all 11 players who saw action on the evening, led by the 34 from Harris, a career best.  He went 6-of-10 from behind the arc, which is also a career high, while adding seven rebounds, five assists, and four steals.

Perkins finished with 21 points and six rebounds off the bench, while fellow senior CJ Massinburg flirted with another triple double, finishing with 17 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists.  Graves had his first career double-double with 13 points and a career-high 12 rebounds.

Senior Dontay Caruthers finished the night with 10 points, three rebounds, four assists, and four steals.  As a team, UB notched a season-high 13 steals.

Segu had three points and two assists, while UB also got a pair of points from sophomores Tra’Von Fagan and Brock Bertram.  The latter also added an offense rebound and a late block in the game.

The Bulls took 83 shots in the game, a season high, and the second time this year they have taken at least 80 shots in a game. Prior to this year, UB had not taken 80 or more field goal attempts in a game since recording 81 against Buffalo State on Jan. 4, 2012.

The seven turnovers tied a season low, which has been accomplished three times this year and the 110 points are tied for the most this season as they also had that total against Dartmouth. The 110 points were the most they have ever scored in a MAC game.

UB is back in action on Saturday when the Bulls host Miami (OH) at Alumni Arena.  Tipoff is set for 12:00 pm and it will air nationally on CBS Sports Network.

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