CORAL GABLES, Fla. - La Salle headed to warm and sunny Miami to take on the Hurricanes on Sunday afternoon. Unfortunately for the Explorers, they could not overcome their cold shooting in a 71-58 defeat.
The Explorers got out to a fast start, scoring 12 points in the first four minutes. The next 36 minutes were nothing like the first four. La Salle managed just 46 points the rest of the way.
La Salle shot 38.3 percent from the floor (23 for 60), and sank just 7 of 18 attempts from beyond the arc. John Giannini gave credit to Miami's defense.
"The fact that they have five players between 6-foot-6 and 7 feet who fly all over the court makes the court very small," Giannini said. "I don't know if you ever played against a team that averages about 6-foot-9 and are athletic and are committed to playing a good zone and do it every day in practice. It is not easy."
Rion Brown was the spark for the Hurricanes. The guard scored 17 points on 6-for-12 shooting and collected nine rebounds, four of them coming on the offensive glass.
"The mind-set was when I was running the offense that they were really sticking to me, not really helping off of me," Brown said. "I couldn't really catch the ball, honestly. I just said when my teammates shoot it I'm going to attack the glass and try to get us extra opportunities."
Tyreek Duren led La Salle with 18 points. He added five rebounds and two assists.
"I think Tyreek played hard," said Giannini, who added: "He gave us good leadership. I thought he played really hard, and his stat line speaks for itself. He didn't turn it over, he scrapped for rebounds. He tried to make some plays, he made some threes. I think he did some good things."
Sam Mills had a solid game for the Explorers in his return home. The Sunrise, Fla., native pumped in 15 points on 6-for-14 shooting.
"It was definitely nice," Mills said about playing in front of his family. "Just seeing them in the crowd and playing in front of them. Unfortunately, we couldn't get the win, but hopefully we can regroup before our next game and get that win."