Dec. 23, 2012
(Las Vegas, NV) - For the second straight day the USD Toreros (6-8) battled hard, rallied with second half surges, but came up short in a hard-fought 62-59 loss to James Madison (6-6) in the final game of the Vegas Holiday Hoops event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Sophomore guard Johnny Dee scored a game-high 18 points, and senior center Chris Manresa posted his first double-double of the season with 10 points and a new career-high 13 rebounds, but it wasn't enough.
Unlike their slow start against Oregon State on Saturday, the Toreros jumped out to a 9-0 lead against the JMU Dukes, only to see James Madison get hot from the field and eventually take a 33-30 intermission lead. Manresa opened the game with a dunk, then Dee followed a trey and back-to-back layups for a great Torero start. JMU guard Devon Moore then scored 13 first half points, and forward Rayshawn Goins chipped in with 9 points for the JMU 3-point lead at intermission.
In the second half the Toreros would tie up the score on three different occasions, the last being at 50-50 with 7:16 to go on a Mike Davis three-pointer. Dee followed with a jumper at the 6:34 mark for a 52-50 advantage, and a Ken Rancifer basket with 3:21 left would extend USD's lead to three at 58-55. From there JMU put together a 5-0 run for a 60-58 lead with 23 seconds left. During that JMU run, the Toreros turned the ball over four times. With 8 seconds left, USD's Rancifer drove hard to the basket, getting fouled and just missing out on the ball going thru the hoop. He missed the first of two free throws to make it 60-59, and the Dukes iced the game when A.J. Davis got free for a dunk with 4 ticks to go.
For the game the Toreros outrebounded the Dukes 33-26, and finished with just 11 turnovers. Unfortunately 9 of those came in the second half. Rancifer joined Dee and Manresa in the double-digit scoring column with 11 points. JMU was paced by Rayshawn Goins with 15 points. The Toreros are now off until Dec. 29th when they host Morgan State in a 7:30 pm contest.
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