GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNCG men’s basketball team got on the court in front of fans in a game situation for the first time in the 2017-18 season Sunday afternoon as the Spartans took part in the exhibition Jamboree for charity in Chapel Hill against North Carolina, UNCW and ECU at the Dean Dome. Proceeds for the event went to the Governor’s North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund.
The Spartans played three abbreviated exhibition games, totaling 40 minutes of play with 13-minute games against UNCW and UNC while playing ECU in a 14-minute contest. UNCG posted a 1-1-1 record in the three games but were the only team to knock off the Tar Heels recording a 32-24 victory. The Spartans tied ECU 15-15 in their final game while dropping a 19-16 contest to UNCW to start off the day.
UNCG 32, North Carolina 24 (13-minute exhibition)
The Spartans connected on 66.7 percent (12-of-18) from the field and hit 70 percent (7-of-10) from 3-point land in the victory over the Tar Heels. Junior guard Francis Alonso (Malaga, Spain/Cushing Academy) led the way with 14 points in 11 minutes of action as he was a perfect 5-of-5 from the field, including four 3-pointers.
Freshman guard Isaiah Miller (Covington, Ga./Newton) came off the bench and provided a spark for the Spartans, scoring six points including a high-flying alley-oop dunk to start his scoring for the game. Miller was 3-of-3 from the field and also posted a steal and two rebounds in eight minute of play. Senior forward Marvin Smith (Richmond, Va./Fork Union Military Academy) added five points while senior forward Jordy Kuiper (Groningen, Netherlands/Canaries Basketball Academy) capped the game with a 3-pointer for the 8-point advantage.
The Spartans trailed 7-5 early on before back-to-back 3-pointers from Smith and Alonso. UNCG broke the game open with a 13-7 run to take a 24-17 lead. Miller scored all six of his point during the run while Alonso hit a pair of 3-pointers, including a step-back shot as the shot clock expired. UNCG closed out the game with an 8-3 run after UNC had narrowed the Spartan lead to 24-21.
UNCG 15, East Carolina 15 (14-minute exhibition)
The Spartans rallied from a 15-5 deficit to score the final 10 points of the third exhibition, tying ECU 15-15. Sophomore guard Malik Massey (Charlotte, N.C./New Hampton Prep) provided much of the offense, scoring nine points on 3-of-3 shooting from deep. Massey hit two-straight to end the game and capping the Spartans’ 10-0 run.
UNCG connected on just 35.3 percent (6-of-17) from the field in the game and only 3-of-10 (30%) from deep. Alonso and Miller scored baskets during the Spartans’ 10-0 run and both teams had chances in the final minute to get the go-ahead basket with ECU having a long 3-pointer attempt at the buzzer fall well off the mark.
UNCW 19, UNCG 16 (13-minute exhibition)
Senior guard Justin Jordan (Davidson, N.C./Milwaukee) had a potential game-tying 3-pointer roll off the rim in the final seconds of the first exhibition as the Spartans dropped a 19-16 contest to UNCW. UNCG connected on 7-of-21 (33.3 percent) from the field in the game but grabbed five offensive rebounds to lead the effort.
Junior guard Demetrius Troy (Raleigh, N.C./Word of God) scored three points and dished out an assist in the game, playing nine minutes. Redshirt sophomore James Dickey (Raleigh, N.C./Word of God) added four points as six different Spartans scored in the 13-minute exhibition.
UNCG opens the 2017-18 regular season Friday night as it travels to Atlantic Coast Conference foe Virginia. Game time is set for 7 p.m. in Charlottesville as the Cavaliers are receiving votes in both national polls heading into the season.
-- UNCG --