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Miami wins home opener, hosts weekend tournament

D5316 Mens Basketball v Kenyon
D5316 Mens Basketball v Kenyon

By Chris Jones, For The Miami Student

The Miami University men's basketball team (1-1) cruised to a 68-47 victory over Kenyon College (0-1) in their home opener Tuesday night.

Sophomore forward Rod Mills led the team with a career-high 12 points, including a 3-for-4 mark from beyond the arc. Mills attributed his scoring to the offseason's hard work and the coaching staff's expectations.

"Freshman year is challenging just because you're not used to anything that they put in," Mills said. "Coach always says when your number is called just be able to contribute and play within your role. I think just this past year with putting in work, I'm more confident in myself so when the time comes, you're ready for it and it's not surprising. I think that's the biggest thing, just being ready."

Senior forward L.J. Livingston contributed 10 points off the bench, and was one of three RedHawks to pull down five rebounds.

Senior guard Geovonie McKnight came out the gate hot with three quick buckets, giving Miami a 6-2 lead with almost sixteen minutes left in the half.

After a Kenyon bucket brought the score within four, Miami exploded with 15 unanswered points, taking a 25-10 lead with 5:50 left in the first half.

Kenyon answered with an 11-2 run before a layup from McKnight closed out the half.

The Lords came out quick in the second half, reducing Miami's lead to 42-28 with 15 minutes left. MU's offense picked up the pace when redshirt senior guard Eric Washington and Livingston combining for 8 straight points, giving Miami a 50-30 lead with 11:08 left to play.

Sophomore guard Zach McCormick and senior forward Kalif Wright entered the game late and posted Miami's final points.

As a team, Miami shot 44.6 percent from the field and 23.5 percent from beyond the arc. The 'Hawks shot 58.3 percent from the free throw line, making 14 of 24 attempts.

Sophomore guard Bennett Grigull led Kenyon with 11 points, including eight in the second half. The Lords shot 35.6 percent from the field and snagged 28 rebounds in the contest.

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Miami's season continues this weekend in the Men Against Breast Cancer Challenge tournament, which features three straight doubleheaders. MU faces Lipscomb University at 7 p.m. on Friday and Florida Atlantic University at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday. The RedHawks close out the tournament against Northeastern University at 2 p.m. on Sunday. All games tip off in Millett Hall.