–> Follow @Tony Liebert on Twitter
Full Game Recap:
- First Half: The Gophers couldn’t have started any better, jumping out to a 15-0 lead 8+ minutes into the game. As expected, Cal Baptist responded with a run of its own. Four Minnesota turnovers sparked a 13-4 run for the Lancers. Ultimately, the Gophers were able to hold onto their lead 26-18, thanks to seven points and seven rebounds from Pharrel Payne. It was an impressive defensive half from the Maroon & Gold, as Cal Baptist did not seem to know what it was doing offensively.
- Second Half: Jamison Battle looked like he was beginning to settle in, as half No. 2 got underway. With five quick points, the Gophers lead 35-25 with 16:14 to go. The scoring seemed to finally pick up, as the Gophers’ freshmen Pharrel Payne and Braeden Carrington kept pace with a 40-31 lead heading into the under 12-minute media timeout. After extending the lead to 13, the Lancers were not going away and cut into the Gophers’ lead 45-36 with 8:48 to go. It wouldn’t stop there getting all the way down to 45-42 with 6:50 to go. A remarkable 20+ point second-half performance from WAC freshman of the year, Taran Armstrong evened the game at 53 with 57-seconds to go. Both teams had a shot to win in regulation, but couldn’t convert giving us some free basketball
- Overtime: It was not pretty for either team in overtime. A Dawson Garcia game-winner was all Minnesota needed and came out on top 62-61.
With a matchup against a tough Virginia Tech team on the horizon and a pair of early-season Big Ten games over Michigan and Purdue, the next few weeks will tell a lot about this basketball team. I am not yet sure what their ceiling can truly be, but I can confidently say this team will only get better, which was not the case with last season’s team.