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CF 121, Pasco-Hernando 69 (MBB)
November 3, 2013By Richard Burton of COLLEGE OF CENTRAL FLORIDA
The College of Central Florida men's basketball made quite an impressive opening statement in defense of its NJCAA National Championship.
The Patriots rolled to a 30-point halftime lead and routed Pasco-Hernando 121-69 in front of a packed house at Patriot Gym.
CF, the nation's top-ranked team, trailed only one at 2-1 and quickly took control and were never threatened by the Conquistadors.
Rodell Wigginton scored 32 points on 13-of-20 shooting to lead the Patriots.
The Ohio University commit also grabbed seven rebounds and dished out four assists.
Wigginton, a 6-foot-6 sophomore, made 13-of-20 shots for CF.
Will Ferguson (16 points), Rasham Suarez (15 points, 15 assists), Chris Bryant (14 points, four steals), Javonte Douglas (12 points, 10 rebounds) and Matthew Uchedike (12 points) backed Wigginton in the win.
As a team, CF dished out 31 assists and made 10 steals.
The Patriots made 49-of-90 shots and held a 57-38 rebounding edge.
CF (1-0) also held PHCC to 29-of-77 shooting and was able to run at will against the outmanned Conquistadors.
Led by Suarez, who made 5-of-13 from beyond the arc, the Patriots made 10-of-30 shots from 3-point range.
After PHCC took its lone lead of the game, CF went on an 8-0 run in a span of 58 seconds.
From there, the Patriots took their first double-digit lead of the game at the 16:25 mark of the first half and had the game well in hand.
The highlight of the first half for the packed house, which saw CF extend its homecourt unbeaten streak from December 2011, was a follow dunk by Douglas, which left the crowd buzzing for several afterwards.
Douglas, an All-American last season at Hill College, went over several PHCC defenders and well above the rim to tomhawk a dunk that pushed CF's lead to 23.
The Patriots led by by as many as 32 in the first half and made 25-of-50 shots over the first half.
CF will now turn its attention to State College of Florida-Manatee at home on Tuesday night at 7:30.
A year ago, the Patriots erased a 23-point deficit and dealt the Manatees a 105-103 defeat.
Prior to Saturday's game, members of last year's NJCAA National Team joined Suarez, Wigginton and Uchedike in a ceremony where a large photo and plaque on the east and west ends of the gym were unveiled.