PORTLAND, Ore. –Portland used a strong shooting performance in the first half to carry them to a 69-52 win over the Columbia men's basketball team on Friday night. The Lions (2-3) will wrap up the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic tomorrow, Nov. 23, at 7:30 p.m. EST on the Ivy League Digital Network.
First-year Jeff Coby came off the bench to set career-highs with 10 points and six rebounds. Maodo Lo and Luke Petrasek also pitched in 10 points apiece.
The Pilots (3-2) raced out to a 20-5 lead, off a 7-of-10 start from the floor, near the midway point of the second half before Columbia’s offense settled in. The Lions slowly chipped away and pulled within 32-24 after a pair of foul shots by Meiko Lyles with 1:06 left in the first and kept the margin at eight at the break despite Portland knocking down 53.8-percent of its field goal attempts.
In the second half, it took Columbia until the 12:45 mark to record a field goal, and yet the Lions still only trailed, 43-33. A Petrasek triple from the wing cut the deficit to nine with 10:22 left, but Portland answered with a 14-4 spurt to effectively put the game out of reach.
The Pilots capitalized on 12 Columbia turnovers, converting them into 21 points. Columbia went to the line 32 times, making 22 of its tries for a 68.8-percent mark.
Thomas van der Mars led Portland with 14 points on 7-of-8 shooting to go with six rebounds.