• Columbia dropped its opener to No. 6 Villanova, 75-60, Friday night in front of a packed Wells Fargo Center. Mike Smith scored a game-high 19 points in the defeat.
• Four first-years saw key minutes in the opener and all found the scoresheet, led by seven points from
• Longwood fell to Stephen F. Austin, 74-61, Saturday in its season debut. The Lancers return three starters from last season's roster.
• Columbia and Longwood will meet for the fifth time. The Lancers have won the last two meetings, including a 70-69 win at Levien Gym thanks to a Chris Shields layup with six seconds remaining.
• The Lions are in the midst of a seven-game road swing to start the 2017-18 campaign.
The Lancers were paced by 21 points from Isaiah Walton, who led the squad in scoring last season, but fell to Stephen F. Austin Saturday afternoon. Longwood was outrebounded, 44-29, and allowed 19 second-chance points in the defeat.
COLUMBIA VS. THE BIG SOUTH
Longwood is the only current Big South opponent Columbia has ever faced.
Head coach Jim Engles had no problem showing off a talented class of first-years at Villanova Friday. Tai Bibbs, Jaron Faulds, Myles Hanson and Gabe Stefanini all played more than 10 minutes and found their way onto the scoresheet against the No. 6 team in the nation. Faulds registered seven points on 3-of-4 shooting. He and Hanson each logged 19 minutes of action off the bench.
"This is a moment that they dream of. They’re D-I players going up against the sixth-ranked team in a place with a lot of people. I think it’s a positive experience and they handled it very well.” - @CoachJimEngles on the four first-years who made their #ColumbiaMBB debut. pic.twitter.com/jaV4djQ93b— Columbia Basketball (@CULionsMBB) November 11, 2017
AGENT “0” RETURNS
After missing all of the 2016-17