Courtney Ramey had the go-ahead driving score with 20 seconds left to help No. 17 Texas hold off Davidson 78-76 in Monday’s opening game of the relocated Maui Invitational
ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Courtney Ramey had the go-ahead driving score with 20 seconds left to help No. 17 Texas hold off Davidson 78-76 in Monday’s opening game of the relocated Maui Invitational.
Ramey’s score broke a 76-all tie, then the Longhorns (2-0) came up with a pair of stops on the final possession, when the Wildcats (1-1) had a chance to tie or win. Davidson’s Sam Mennenga missed a contested 3-pointer from the wing, but the Wildcats got another shot when the ball went out of bounds with 3.8 seconds left.
The Wildcats inbounded again to Mennenga, who missed a final 3 for the win with Texas’ Andrew Jones closely defending him. Mennenga turned toward the official at the horn, while Davidson coach Bob McKillop also protested slightly before leaving the court.
Ramey scored 14 points to lead the Longhorns, who shot 48% and had six players in double figures. Jones finished with 13 points in his season debut, as did Kai Jones.
Mennenga scored 17 points to lead Davidson, which shot nearly 57%.
Texas thrice built seven-point leads in the second half, the last time coming on Jericho Sims’ whistle-drawing dunk to make it 72-65 with 5:06 left. But Davidson hung in and never let Texas stretch that lead, then fought back to tie it on Luka Brajkovic’s hook shot with 62 seconds left to set up the final sequence.
The tournament is being played in the North Carolina mountains instead of its traditional Hawaii setting due to the coronavirus pandemic, giving the Wildcats a home-state game with seats filled by fan cutouts and pumped-in crowd noise.
Texas: The Longhorns had an easy opener, shooting better than 57% in Wednesday’s 91-55 win against Texas-Rio Grande Valley. Andrew Jones — who missed most of the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons after a leukemia diagnosis — didn’t play in that one for precautionary reasons due to a cough, though coach Shaka Smart said he had a negative COVID-19 test. Jones looked good in his debut, but Texas made just 16 of 24 free throws in this one, squandering a chance to build a bigger lead.
Davidson: The Wildcats returned four starters from last season and were picked to finish seventh in the Atlantic 10. They shot 62% after halftime of their season-opening win against High Point and carried that momentum into this one by making 10 of their first 13 shots. But they went without a basket for nearly six minutes in the first half, then had another four-minute basket drought amid a series of second-half turnovers, stretches that loomed large by the end of a tight fight to the horn.
Texas: The Longhorns advanced to the semifinals, where they face the Indiana-Providence winner on Tuesday.
Davidson: The Wildcats fell into the consolation bracket to face the Indiana-Providence loser on Tuesday.
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