Green Bay wins first game of season
By GREEN BAY ATHLETICS
GREEN BAY – The Green Bay Phoenix men’s basketball team picked up its first win of the season over IUPUI, 68-61, inside a packed Resch Center on Dec. 5.
The Phoenix (1-7, 1-1 HL) got a career game from Zae Blake, who finished the game with 20 points, four assists and three steals.
Vincent Brady II paced IUPUI (1-8, 0-2 HL) with 17 points and four assists. Brady added six rebounds to his line, while Jlynn Counter tallied eight rebounds.
Green Bay jumped out to an early 6-0 lead after Clarence Cummings III drilled two triples. Brady countered with one, and the Jaguars eventually pulled within one at 8-7 with 14:29 to go in the opening half. It remained a one-possession game until Blake made the first of his three first-half treys, extending Green Bay’s lead to 16-10 with 16-10 with 11:52 remaining.
IUPUI remained poised despite a raucous crowd on Education Day, fighting back again to retake the lead at 20-18 after Jonah Carrasco made a layup in the paint. However, the Phoenix would end the first half on a 14-4 run thanks to a solid effort from Blake, who totaled five points and a steal in the final 6:40. Blake capped the run with a circus shot buzzer-beating 3-pointer that banked off the glass, sending Green Bay back to the locker room with a 32-24 halftime lead.
The Phoenix would stay hot coming out of intermission, grabbing its first double-digit lead of the game at 42-32 after Donavan Short made his first collegiate triple from the right wing. Blake also kept contributing, recording one block, assist, rebound, steal, and five points in the span of 4:57, helping Green Bay increase its lead to 49-37 with 10:44 left in the game. IUPUI tried to make one last run down the stretch, pulling to within five after Amhad Jarrard knocked down two free throws, capping six straight Jaguar points scored by Jarrard. Garren Davis, Cummings, and Blake went 5-for-6 from the charity stripe in the final 38 seconds, helping Green Bay stave off IUPUI for a 68-61 win.
“What a fun environment with the kids out there,” Green Bay coach Will Ryan said. “[The win] wasn’t pretty, the guys battled, and they competed for 40 minutes. That’s what we’ve been stressing all year: don’t beat yourselves.”