Norchad Omier scored a game-high 19 points, Isaiah Wong added 18 and Miami held on for a 74-64 victory over Providence Saturday afternoon in the Hall of Fame Tip-Off Classic in Uncasville, Conn.
The win gave the Hurricanes (4-0) their best start since the 2018-19 team won its first five games and gifted Jim Larranaga his 700th coaching victory against 475 losses.
Kentucky transfer Bryce Hopkins led Providence with 16 points, Jared Bynum added 14 and Devin Carter had 11 for the Friars (3-1).
Nijel Pack, a transfer from Kansas State, also was in double figures for the Hurricanes with 11 points.
Omier, a transfer from Arkansas State, also snagged 12 rebounds to help Miami to a 38-29 advantage on the boards.
The Friars cut into a double-digit halftime deficit to close within six points three times in the first 11 minutes of the second half, the last at 55-49 on Clifton Moore’s free throws, but the Hurricanes responded with an 8-0 run capped by Jordan Miller’s banked in 3-pointer.
The Hurricanes retained a double-digit lead the rest of the way with Bynum’s 3-pointer in the final eight seconds getting the margin down to 10 points.
Miami took the lead for good at the 10:45 mark of the first half on Pack’s 3-pointer. The Hurricanes’ largest lead was 15 points, 38-23, in the final minute of the first half.
The Friars jumped in front early but the Hurricanes responded with a 9-0 run that gave them a 20-15 lead with 9:29 left and then a 12-1 spurt that gave them a 13-point cushion, 32-19, at the 4:18 mark.
Miami held a 15-point advantage before Providence’s Alyn Breed sank a 3-pointer in the closing seconds to trim the lead to 38-26 at the break.
Neither team shot well in the first half (Miami was 13-of-33 from the field, Providence 9-of-25), and the Hurricanes enjoyed a 22-15 rebounding edge and had the advantage in turnovers with only four to the Friars’ eight.
Miami finished 27-of-63 (42.9 percent) for the game to the Friars’ 21-of-50 (42.0 percent).
–Field Level Media