GWANGJU, Korea – Kansas men’s basketball, representing the USA National Team at the 2015 World University Games, ran past China 93-56 in a scrimmage game Thursday afternoon at the Seolwol Girls School Gymnasium in Gwangju, Korea.
Down 11-7 midway through the first quarter, guard Tyler Self started a USA 11-2 run by hitting a jumper followed by a Perry Ellis alley-oop from guard Evan Manning to put the Americans up 18-13. USA took a 20-16 advantage into the second quarter.
With a 26-22 lead, the USA squad went on a 10-0 run midway through the second period to build a 14-point cushion. Forward Landen Lucas scored eight of the team’s 10 points, including three dunks. The China team cut the lead back to single digits by scoring the final five points of the half giving the Americans a 36-27 lead at intermission.
“We played fast, so we looked pretty athletic,” USA coach Bill Self said following the victory. “The biggest thing is everybody got to play. We still make the game harder for us than it actually is at certain times. If we could just get to where we guard the ball and become a better rebounding team, I think we could be pretty good. We don’t have the full complement of our guys but the guys who are playing are doing a really nice job. I’m happy to be around them and happy to coach them.”
Once again, the USA Team used it athleticism to blow by the China squad as it opened the third quarter with a 12-3 stretch which included six points from forward Hunter Mickelson and four from guard Julian DeBose to give the USA a 48-31 lead.
The USA Team saved it best energy for the fourth quarter as it outscored China 36-18 in cruising to the victory. In the run the Americans had five fast-break dunks and drained four three-pointers.
Opening Ceremonies are set for Friday, July 3 and the USA delegation said the event is sold out and expect more than 40,000 people inside Gwangju Universiade Main Stadium. The Opening Ceremonies are set to being at 7 p.m., 5 p.m. in Kansas, can be seen live online at http://www.livefisu.tv/home.
The USA will begin World University Game Pool D competition when it plays Turkey on July 4 at noon, which is July 3 at 10 p.m. in Kansas. The game will be played at Dongkang Gymnasium and televised on ESPNU.