Pilots fall just short of No. 1 North Carolina in PKI opener

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland men’s basketball team racked up a 25-point performance off the bench to lead over 11 minutes into the second half before falling 89-81 to the top-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels in the Phil Knight Invitational opener Thursday at Mode Center.The Pilots (4-3) had three players score in double digits, led by Moses Wood, who had 21 points. Alden Applewhite added 14 points off the bench and Tyler Robertson also scored with 13 points, seven assists and two steals.

The Portland offense was very productive from three-point land, hitting 12 threes on 32 attempts. Wood was the most prolific shooter for the pilots, losing four treys in the match.

Portland forced 13 North Carolina turnovers while recording 12 of their own in Thursday’s game. The pilots turned those takeaways into 20 points on the offensive side of the floor. Chika Nduka’s three steals led the way to Portland.

How it happened
After trailing 18-8, Portland went on a 10-0 run with 12:54 left in the first half, highlighted by a Joey St. Pierre bucket, to tie the game at 18. North Carolina then pulled ahead and sent the Pilots going into halftime 40-38.

After the break, Portland stopped the Tar Heels from extending their lead before going on a 6-0 run, finished by Wood’s jumper, to grab a 73-69 lead with 5:57 left in the game. North Carolina reasserted control and beat the Pilots 20-8 the rest of the way to give Portland the 89-81 loss. Portland was boosted by his bench in the period, as non-starters accounted for 12 of 43 total points.

Game notes
» Portland achieved success from outside the arc, knocking down 12 treys in the game.
» The pilots performed a pass clinic and recorded an assist on 22 of 28 field goals.
» The Portland bench impressed by adding 25 points to the score.
» Portland’s defense forced 13 turnovers.
» Moses Wood led the pilots with 21 points.
Portland got six rebounds from Chika Nduka in addition to eight points.

Next one

The Pilots will continue the PKI Friday against the loser of Thursday’s Villanova-Iowa State game. The tip is at noon at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum.Buy your tickets now!
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Pilots fall just short of No. 1 North Carolina in PKI opener

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