GREENVILLE, S.C. — The Clemson men’s basketball team took on UTSA on Sunday, and won convincingly behind the strength of Donte Grantham’s career-high 22 points. The Tigers move to 2-0 on the season, while UTSA falls to 0-2.
“I thought our guys had great spirit today, even this morning in the shootaround,” said head coach Brad Brownell, who celebrated his birthday on Sunday. “We shot the ball exceptionally well and were very aggressive. I am pleased with how the guys shared the ball on the court today.”
Grantham was efficient, shooting 7-9 overall and 5-7 from three-point range, with both figures breaking his career highs. Gabe DeVoe also had an impressive game, putting up 11 points, while grabbing a career-best six rebounds. The Tigers shot 50.9 percent for the game and nailed 12 three-point goals, matching a single-game best under Brownell.
The Tigers got off to a hot start in the first half, racking up 48 points, the most scored in a first half under Brownell. The first half also saw the highest shooting percentage (65.4) in a first half under Brownell. A contributing factor to the first half success was the 61.5 percent mark from three-point distance (8-13).
Clemson extended its 20 point halftime lead and doubled up the Roadrunners. The Tiger defense cranked it up in the second half, holding UTSA to a 26.9 percent mark from the floor. Jordan Roper played a terrific floor game in the second half, as he finished with 13 points and a career-high seven assists.
The Tigers return to action Thursday to take on Texas Southern. The game is set to tip off at 7 p.m. at The Well.
Clemson vs. UTSA
- Clemson held its second straight opponent to less than 50 points. The Tiger program is now 33-2 under Brad Brownell when holding the opposition to 50 or less.
- Clemson made 12 three-point baskets against the Roadrunners, tying the program’s high number in 165 games under coach Brad Brownell.
- The Tigers had 22 assists on 27 made field goals Sunday, tying the program’s high number in 165 games under coach Brad Brownell.
- Clemson’s 48 points in the opening frame were a new high under Brad Brownell, who has coached the Tigers for 165 games.
- The Tigers also shot 65.4 percent in the first half, a high under Brownell.
- Donte Grantham scored a career-high 22 points against the Roadrunners, breaking his previous high of 16 set last season against Syracuse.
- Grantham set career highs for field goals (7) and three-pointers (5).
- Gabe DeVoe scored double figures for the first time this season, and third time in his career.
- DeVoe matched his career high with three makes from three-point range.
- DeVoe had a career-high six rebounds Sunday.
- Jordan Roper scored double figures for the 32nd time in his career. The senior from Irmo, S.C., finished with 13 points.
- Roper posted seven assists against UTSA, a new high for the senior in his 98th career game.
- Landry Nnoko blocked five shots Sunday, giving him 11 on the season and 152 for his career. He is ninth in Clemson history for blocks.
- Avry Holmes made his 100th career three-point goal Sunday, early in the second half. Holmes tallied five assists with no turnovers in 29 minutes vs. UTSA.
- Sidy Djitte matched his career high with 10 total rebounds in just 13 minutes.
- Riley McGillan made his first career three-pointer as a Tiger on Sunday.
Clemson vs. UTSA
Clemson Head Coach Brad Brownell
“It was certainly a good performance by our guys. I was really proud of the way we were focused all weekend, I thought our guys had great spirit at the shoot around this morning. We played well and when you shoot it like that early, it builds your confidence. It was great to see Donte (Grantham), Gabe (DeVoe) and Jordan Roper make some early shots from three. We shot the ball really well, I thought our press offense was really good against their full court pressure. I thought we scored against their press, which is something we thought they would want to do. Defensively, we did a good job against their best scorer, we thought we could slow him down a little bit or trying to would be helpful for us.”
On this team potentially being his best offensive team at Clemson:
“If you are making the shots that we did, I do believe we have a chance to be that. More guys can consistently make threes this year and it will be a big part of our success — shooting the ball well. We were very aggressive today and shot it a little bit quicker, some of that was because of the way they were playing us. I want our guys attacking when they can, and I was really pleased with the way we shared the ball as well. We had 22 assists, so we were looking for the open man and knocking in shots.”
On having multiple options:
“It is really important. It is something we have talked about with this year’s team, we thought we would shoot it better from three, we think we are a better three point shooting team. We have some older inside guys that play the game the right way, and even Landry (Nnoko) had three assists today, some of that was the press around him and he would kick it out, when it went inside to him and he would kick it out, but certainly we think that is one of our weapons … being a stronger three-point shooting team.”