The Knights extinguished the Flames Saturday in an 88-58 blowout at home, anchored by a balanced scoring attack with nine different players getting on the scoreboard.
The Knights went wire to wire with their largest lead of 35 points coming with 54 seconds to play. They dominated with 34 points in the paint and 44 points from their reserves.
Junior Justin McBride was a man amongst boys in this game posting 14 points, eight rebounds and a block in just 15 minutes of play.
“Once you see one go in, you see the second one go in and you start getting in a little groove ... the rebounds will come, you just have to put yourself in the right position. They were going in, it’s a part of basketball,” McBride said.
Senior Daiquan Walker had a season-high 21 points and redshirt sophomore A.J. Davis filled the box score with 12 points, three assists, two blocks and a steal. Freshman Chance McSpadden was the icing on the cake with a solid game, finishing with eight points, six assists and team-high five steals.
“I feel like it was a good defensive game. It was real fun pressuring the team getting out getting steals, getting easy buckets. I think that was a big part of the win,” McSpadden said.
Just 13 minutes into the game, the Knights held a 21-10 early lead, which eventually ballooned to a 43-21 advantage for them by halftime.
Last season the Knights gave up a three-point halftime lead and eventually lost by 11, but the Knights made sure to close the deal winning the second half, 45-37.
Freshman Tacko Fall’s rejection at one end and Walker’s coast-to-coast layup typified the aggressive, yet free-flowing effort that the Knights put forth against the Flames.
After this win, the Knights are 3-3 and seem to be putting together a formula that will allow them to win consistently.
“The quarterback of our team has been injured, so we’ve had guys playing in different roles in different places. We’ve practiced well, we took coaching, we’ve watched film and these guys have been very coachable wanting to learn. We’re not a finished product by any means, we have a huge ceiling for this team,” head coach Donnie Jones said.
The Knights will play the second of their three-game home stand Tuesday at 7 p.m. against the (5-1) Massachusetts Minutemen.
Christopher Davis is a Contributing Writer for the Central Florida Future.