NCCU
CINCY

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Williams has career-high 15 in UC's 73-51 win over NCCU

CINCINNATI (AP) Keith Williams's first career start was just what Cincinnati needed to jumpstart a sluggish offense.

Despite dealing with an illness that kept him away from post-game media sessions, Williams scored a career-high 15 points, three of his teammates also reached double figures and Cincinnati beat North Carolina Central 73-51 on Tuesday night.

Trevon Scott also set a career high with 12 points and Jarron Cumberland and Justin Jenifer each added 10 for Cincinnati (1-1), which led by as many as 29 points in the second half and improved to 3-0 in the series with the Eagles.

Scott believed Williams' defense set the tone for the offense.

''He had 10 deflections,'' Scott said of the sophomore, ''He led us in deflections. He was active all over the court. He had the spark. Everybody else just followed.''

That was the kind of effort Mick Cronin saw in practice from Williams, who scored just four points against Ohio State in the opener.

''The real reason he started?'' Cronin said, ''Keith's effort in practice the last three days. He cares so much, he gets jittery. As the game went on, he got calmer and calmer. We have to get him to focus on defense and rebounding and blocked shots and to take his time on offense.''

Williams's previous career high was 10, which he reached twice as a freshman last season. Scott's previous career high was 11 on Dec. 13, 2016, against Texas Southern.

Scott's joy over his 12 points was obscured by finishing with just three rebounds.

''I had one offensive rebound,'' he lamented. ''I'll be hearing about that all week.''

The Bearcats shook off shooting a chilly 27 percent on November 7 in a loss to Ohio State to go 31-of-53 (59 percent) from the field against the Eagles (0-2).

Randy Miller Jr. was the only player to reach double figures for NCCU, finishing with 21 points for the team that has reached the NCAA Tournament in three of the past five seasons.

Cronin also was impressed by the 13 turnovers forced by the Bearcats, which led to a 19-8 advantage in points off turnovers.

''Anything over 15 points off turnovers, it's hard for the other team to win,'' Cronin said. ''I thought our energy and effort on defense was excellent. We still have mistakes we have to correct. I was really happy with the way the game went. I was surprised that we were able to pull away from them the way we did.''

The Bearcats went 1-for-8 over one stretch and 1-for-7 on 3-pointers in the first half but still shot 52 percent (16-of-31) on the way to a 34-19 halftime lead. They closed the half with a 16-5 run and led by as many as 18 points before halftime. Scott finished the first half with eight points, matching his total against the Buckeyes. Williams scored six points before halftime on Tuesday, two more than he scored against Ohio State.

Cumberland, who scored just four points in the first half, scored six on two 3-pointers as Cincinnati took control with an 13-2 run to open the second half.

BLOCK PARTY

The Bearcats blocked eight NCCU shots, led by the 6-foot-5 Williams with a career-high three. The Eagles finished with one.

O FOR OHIO

NCCU still is looking for its first Division I win in the state of Ohio.

INSIDE GAME

Cincinnati was 26-of-38 (67 percent) on shots inside the 3-point line.

BIG PICTURE

NCCU: The Eagles are opening the season with three consecutive road games for the second straight season.

Cincinnati: The game was the second of four straight at home to open the season for the Bearcats.

UP NEXT

NCCU: At Bowling Green on Thursday.

Cincinnati: Hosts Milwaukee on Friday.

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Key Players
Min. Per Game
Pts. Per Game
Ast. Per Game
Reb. Per Game
Field Goal %
Three Point %
Free Throw %
  Shot clock violation turnover on Cincinnati 0.0
  Defensive rebound by Mamoudou Diarra 31.0
  Roderick Taylor Jr. missed layup 33.0
  Bad pass turnover on Rashawn Fredericks, stolen by Julian Walters 50.0
+ 1 Rashann London made 2nd of 2 free throws 59.0
+ 1 Rashann London made 1st of 2 free throws 59.0
  Personal foul on Mamoudou Diarra 59.0
+ 1 Logan Johnson made 2nd of 2 free throws 1:20
+ 1 Logan Johnson made 1st of 2 free throws 1:20
  Personal foul on Roderick Taylor Jr. 1:20
  Defensive rebound by Logan Johnson 1:38
Team Stats
Points 51 73
Field Goals 17-47 (36.2%) 31-53 (58.5%)
3-Pointers 8-17 (47.1%) 5-14 (35.7%)
Free Throws 9-12 (75.0%) 6-12 (50.0%)
Total Rebounds 26 31
Offensive 8 6
Defensive 15 20
Team 3 5
Assists 12 19
Steals 4 8
Blocks 1 8
Turnovers 14 11
Fouls 18 13
Technicals 0 0
21 PTS, 1 AST
15 PTS, 4 REB, 3 AST
12T
away team logo NC Central 0-2 193251
home team logo Cincinnati 1-1 343973
Team Stats
away team logo NC Central 0-2 71.4 PPG 40.6 RPG 15.5 APG
home team logo Cincinnati 1-1 71.7 PPG 39.3 RPG 13.3 APG
Key Players
21
R. Miller, Jr. G 13.3 PPG 2.4 RPG 1.9 APG 41.9 FG%
2
K. Williams G 9.9 PPG 3.2 RPG 1.1 APG 45.1 FG%
Top Scorers
R. Miller, Jr. G 21 PTS 0 REB 1 AST
K. Williams G 15 PTS 4 REB 3 AST
36.2 FG% 58.5
47.1 3PT FG% 35.7
75.0 FT% 50.0
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
R. Miller, Jr. 21 0 1 7/13 5/8 2/2 4 30 0 0 2 0 0
R. Davis 8 12 0 3/8 0/0 2/4 5 35 0 0 4 6 6
Z. Douglas 7 6 1 3/4 0/0 1/2 3 38 1 0 2 1 5
L. McKnight Jr. 3 2 0 1/6 1/3 0/0 0 19 1 0 0 1 1
J. Perkins 0 0 6 0/5 0/0 0/0 2 31 1 0 2 0 0
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
R. Miller, Jr. 21 0 1 7/13 5/8 2/2 4 30 0 0 2 0 0
R. Davis 8 12 0 3/8 0/0 2/4 5 35 0 0 4 6 6
Z. Douglas 7 6 1 3/4 0/0 1/2 3 38 1 0 2 1 5
L. McKnight Jr. 3 2 0 1/6 1/3 0/0 0 19 1 0 0 1 1
J. Perkins 0 0 6 0/5 0/0 0/0 2 31 1 0 2 0 0
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
R. Gardner Jr. 8 2 4 3/7 2/4 0/0 2 20 0 1 2 0 2
R. London 4 0 0 0/2 0/1 4/4 1 17 0 0 2 0 0
R. Taylor Jr. 0 0 0 0/1 0/0 0/0 1 5 0 0 0 0 0
J. Walters 0 1 0 0/1 0/1 0/0 0 4 1 0 0 0 1
J. Guerra 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
J. Blount - - - - - - - - - - - - -
N. Fennell - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 51 23 12 17/47 8/17 9/12 18 200 4 1 14 8 15
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. Williams 15 4 3 7/12 1/2 0/1 2 26 2 3 1 3 1
T. Scott 12 3 2 6/6 0/0 0/0 0 29 1 1 1 1 2
J. Jenifer 10 0 6 4/5 2/3 0/0 1 23 2 0 0 0 0
J. Cumberland 10 2 3 4/9 2/5 0/1 1 24 2 1 3 0 2
N. Brooks 5 7 1 2/4 0/0 1/2 2 23 0 2 0 0 7
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. Williams 15 4 3 7/12 1/2 0/1 2 26 2 3 1 3 1
T. Scott 12 3 2 6/6 0/0 0/0 0 29 1 1 1 1 2
J. Jenifer 10 0 6 4/5 2/3 0/0 1 23 2 0 0 0 0
J. Cumberland 10 2 3 4/9 2/5 0/1 1 24 2 1 3 0 2
N. Brooks 5 7 1 2/4 0/0 1/2 2 23 0 2 0 0 7
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
L. Johnson 8 4 2 3/6 0/1 2/2 0 17 0 0 2 2 2
E. Nsoseme 5 4 0 2/3 0/0 1/3 1 13 1 1 1 0 4
T. Moore 3 0 1 1/3 0/1 1/1 2 16 0 0 0 0 0
R. Fredericks 3 0 1 1/1 0/0 1/2 1 11 0 0 1 0 0
M. Diarra 2 2 0 1/1 0/0 0/0 1 4 0 0 0 0 2
C. Broome 0 0 0 0/3 0/2 0/0 2 14 0 0 2 0 0
J. Koz - - - - - - - - - - - - -
S. Martin - - - - - - - - - - - - -
L. Hardnett - - - - - - - - - - - - -
P. Gillam Toyambi - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 73 26 19 31/53 5/14 6/12 13 200 8 8 11 6 20