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Miami Dominates Coppin State in Non-Conference Finale

The Hurricanes showed improvement in their last non-conference game of the season.

NCAA Basketball: Louisville at Miami Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Hurricanes finished their non-conference schedule with a blowout win over the Coppin State Eagles, 91-60. The ‘Canes held CSU to just 30.3% shooting on the game and dominated from start to finish.

Miami largely controlled the game in the first half, taking a 34-20 lead into the break. The ‘Canes held CSU to just 21.9% shooting in the first 20 minutes and shut them down from three-point range, allowing just 14.3% shooting from beyond the arc.

The Hurricanes’ would have had a larger lead if they had done a better job protecting the basketball. The ‘Canes shot a solid 41.7% but turned the ball over 11 times. With how Miami played their lead should have been greater, but the turnovers can be a teaching point for Jim Larranaga.

At one point Miami’s players from down under (Sam Waardeneburg and D.J. Vasiljevic) had 19 points, and Coppin State had just three. The ‘Canes were led on the floor by those two’s strong play in the first half. The duo combined for 22 of Miami’s 34 first half points.

Miami took control in the second half. Kameron McGusty hit multiple threes in a row to jump-start the ‘Canes offense. The Hurricanes couldn’t miss in the second half, and ended up hitting the most threes they’ve hit all season, 18.

All of Miami’s guards played well. McGusty led the Hurricanes with 28 points in the game, most of which came in the second half. He finished 9-11 from the floor and 5-7 from beyond the arc. He added five rebounds and two assists to his total. D.J Vasiljevic finished with 21 points on the game, and Chris Lykes finished with 16.

The Hurricanes offensive outburst was also due to much better protection of the ball. After 11 first half turnovers Miami gave the ball away just four times in the second half. The Hurricanes shooting also improved, they finished the day 51.9% from the floor and 45.9% from three.

The only negative of the afternoon came with just under 10 minutes left in the second half. Keith Stone, who recently returned from an injury, left the game after feeling a twinge in his opposite knee. Stone has been a big part of the Hurricanes’ improvement in the last few games. If he’s out for an extended period of time he’ll be hard to replace for Miami.

Despite playing an outmatched opponent the ‘Canes showed improvement and dominated in a game they should have. Miami will hope to keep the momentum going when conference play resumes against Clemson on New Year’s Eve.