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No. 10/13 Miami Tops No. 12/12 Minnesota, 86-81

MINNEAPOLIS – The No. 10/13 Miami men’s basketball team improved to 6-0 on the year with an 86-81 win at No. 12/12 Minnesota Wednesday evening in front of a raucous, sold-out crowd at Williams Arena. Miami captured its fourth straight game in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.
 
Miami again showed balance on the offensive end, with five players scoring in double figures. Dewan Huell had a huge game, scoring a career-high 23 points on 10-of-16 shooting. Bruce Brown Jr. added 16 points, nine rebounds and five assists, while Ja’Quan Newton added 12, Dejan Vasiljevic 11 and Chris Lykes 10.
 
The Hurricanes shot 50.7 percent from the field, including 10-for-25 from 3-point range. UM limited Minnesota to 44.4 percent shooting, including 5-for-16 from behind the arc. Miami turned the ball over just eight times.
 
After the teams played to a 36-all deadlock through 20 minutes, the Hurricanes struck with a 9-2 run to start the second half, capped by a fast-break 3-pointer from Lykes, to take a 45-38 lead and prompt a Minnesota timeout at the 17:23 mark. 
 
The Hurricanes pushed their lead to 11, 62-51, with 11:30 remaining as Lonnie Walker IV went strong to the hole and finished while drawing the foul. He hit the free throw for the and-one. Miami led by as many as a dozen points, but the Gophers fought back and cut the lead to two, 73-71, at the 3:46 mark on an Isaiah Washington layup. 
 
Huell came right back with a dunk to push the lead back to four and spur a 7-0 run for an 80-71 lead with 2:06 left, and the Canes’ lead never dropped below five the rest of the way.
 
Miami started the game strong, moving to a 17-10 lead at the 12:12 mark on a layup from Brown, as he and Anthony Lawrence II combined for 15 of the Hurricanes’ first 17 points, but Minnesota quickly cut the lead to a point on back-to-back threes from Nate Mason. 
 
Minnesota took its first lead, 30-28, on a pair of free throws from Amir Coffee at the 3:31 mark as part of a 11-0 run as the Gophers grabbed a 34-28 edge. Miami came right back with eight straight points before a Coffey bucket tied the game heading into the break, 36-36.
 
Brown had nine points in the first half, while Lawrence and Huell each chipped in eight.
 
Coffey led five Gophers in double figures with 23 points in the game. 
 
Miami takes on Princeton Saturday evening in a neutral-site contest at the Hoophall Miami Invitational at AmericanAirlines Arena in downtown Miami. Game time is set for 8 p.m., and ESPNU has the telecast.
 
To keep up with the University of Miami men’s basketball team on social media, follow @CanesHoops on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.
 
GAME NOTES
Team
• Miami leads the series with Minnesota, 2-1.
• Miami is 6-5 all-time in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, including four straight wins.
• Miami is now 5-2 in road openers under Jim Larrañaga.
• UM is 36-1 when scoring 80 points under Larrañaga.
• This was Miami’s first-ever trip to the state of Minnesota.
• Miami has started 6-0 for the second time under Larrañaga (2014-15 team opened 8-0).
• Miami put five players in double figures in scoring for the fifth time in six games.
• Miami turned the ball over a season-low eight times and had a 17-2 advantage in points off turnovers.
• Miami was out-rebounded for the first time this season. 
• UM trailed for just 2:01 in the game. The Canes have trailed for 20 minutes, 46 seconds this season (out of 240 minutes) and have yet to be down in the second half this year.
 
Individual
• Dewan Huell scored a career-high 23 points and reached double figures for the sixth straight game to start the season.
• Ja’Quan Newton matched a career high with nine assists. He had only one turnover.
• Bruce Brown Jr. scored a season-high 16 points and fell one rebound shy of a double-double. He also recorded five assists.
• Chris Lykes scored 10 points, his second straight game in double figures (third in six games). He added a season-high three steals.
• Anthony Lawrence scored eight of Miami’s first 10 points in the game.
• Lawrence and Brown combined for 15 of Miami’s first 17 points.