Men’s Basketball Overcomes Army at London Classic, 74-66

LONDON – The Princeton University men’s basketball team opened the 2022 London Basketball Classic on a high note Thursday night inside Copper Box Arena, overcoming Army 74-66 and advancing to the Championship Game.

The Tigers were led by junior Matt Allocco, who finished with a double-double; he tied for the team-high in points with 15, and pulled down a career and game-high 12 rebounds. Sophomore Blake Peters also tied the game-high in points, finishing with 15 on 5-for-10 shooting from the field and 5-for-10 shooting from three. Peters’ made field goals and made three-pointers were also career-bests.

Playing in his home country for the first time at the college level, senior Tosan Evbuomwan added 14 points on 6-for-8 shooting, eight rebounds and a game-high four assists. The Tigers also received a boost from their freshman as Xaivian Lee added nine points, while Caden Pierce finished with seven points and 11 rebounds. Senior Jacob O’Connell also added four points, two rebounds, two assists and one block in 15 minutes off the bench.

Along with out-rebounding the Black Knights 41-26, Princeton’s bench also outscored Army’s, 28-12.

Army raced out to a 15-8 lead with 13:14 on the clock, but a three-pointer from the left corner by Allocco narrowed the deficit to four, 15-11, with 12:52 left in the half.

Peters knocked down a three-pointer at 12:32, then Lee drained a pair of free throws that made it a two-point game, 18-16, with 7:09 left in the half. The Black Knights responded by extending their lead back out to eight, 24-18, but Evbuomwan fed off the home crowd; with 5:19 on the clock he scored seven-straight points, including a powerful two-handed and-one dunk, and made it a one-point with 4:39 remaining, 24-23.

The Tigers took their first lead of the half, 28-26, after a step-back three-pointer by Lee at 3:55. With 0:40 on the clock, Evbuomwan made a layup and the Tigers took a 33-32 advantage into halftime.

The second half began as a back-and-forth battle, with a layup by senior Ryan Langborg putting the Tigers up, 43-30, with 14:36 ​​left to play. With 12:19 remaining, a layup by Allocco ignited an 8-0 run, that saw the Tigers surge ahead 52-42 following a three-pointer by Lee.

Shortly, after, the Tigers went on another 8-0 run, this time sparked by an and one layup by O’Connell with 10:40 on the clock, that gave Princeton a 60-43 advantage at 9:04 after a three- pointer by Pierce.

Army was able to trim the Tigers’ lead back down single digits at 60-51 with 6:31 left to play, but the Tigers extended it back to 15, 71-56, after a three-pointer by Langborg at 3:57. From there, Princeton was able to hold on for the 74-66 victory over the Black Knights.

Next

The Tigers will take on Northeastern (1-4) in the Championship Game of the 2022 London Basketball Classic on Saturday, November 26, at 12:00 pm EST / 5:00 pm GMT.

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