Live Blog: Gophers Men’s Basketball v. Tenn. Tech

Marco LaNave

Gophers head coach Tubby Smith will coach his 600th game as the Gophers open the 2009-10 season against Tennessee Tech.

FINAL SCORE – GOPHERS 87, TENNESSEE TECH 50.

0:34.4 2nd – A final touch on the victory, as Joseph feeds Williams for a soaring dunk. Williams has 14 points, second only to Westbrook. GOPHERS 87-50.

3:54 2nd – The starters just exited to a nice ovation less than a minute ago. Westbrook has 22 points on 9-of-13 shooting. Sampson, Johnson and Carter each have 9. Nolen had 7 points and seven assists. GOPHERS 74-40.

8:58 2nd – Westbrook has made his third 3-pointer of the half, and Sampson had another nice move to put in a short bucket. GOPHERS 58-31.

11:33 2nd – Minnesota has started to make the outside shot. Joseph made a long 2-pointer just a moment ago. He is 0-of-5 from 3-point range but is now 2-of-8 overall. GOPHERS 53-27.

15:28 2nd – The buzzer-beater at the half seems to have ignited Westbrook, who has helped Minnesota increase its lead with a 12-5 run to start the half. Westbrook has been perfect from the field in the second half, making two 3-pointers and making a steal for an easy layup. GOPHERS 49-27.

0:00 1st – The Gophers call a timeout to set up their final play of the half with 3.8 seconds left. Johnson makes an in-bound pass to Sampson between the circle and three-point line on the Tennesee Tech side. Sampson turns and throws a high pass to Westbrook, who catches it with under two seconds to go. He fights off two Tennessee Tech defenders to make about a 23-foot 3-pointer of the back of the rim at the buzzer. Golden Eagles head coach Mike Sutton winces in disgust. GOPHERS 37-22.

3:27 1st – The Gophers have moved quickly on offensive possessions. They’ve tried to find Devoe Joseph for a 3, but he has missed his first four from long range. GOPHERS 24-15.

9:11 1st – After falling down to maintain an intercepted pass, Carter runs down the floor to get a rebound and make a 2-point shot in the paint. Minnesota has eight steals. GOPHERS 19-7.

11:45 1st – Freshman forward Rodney Williams just made a 3-pointer and has 5 points (team high) and a block. Most of the second team has played the last few minutes. First team, with Williams instead of Carter, is on the floor. GOPHERS 15-7.

15:31 1st – The Gophers have made three of eight shots.  Carter had a slam to make it 4-0 but later missed a 3 on an air ball.  Nolen has moved the ball well and has two assists.  Sophomore center Colton Iverson entered for Sampson a few moments ago.  GOPHERS 6-3.

Tennessee Tech Starters:

F Alfred Jones
F Bassey Inameti
G Kevin Murphy
G Frank Davis
G Elijah Muhammad

Gophers Starters:

F Jr. Paul Carter
F Sr. Damian Johnson
C So. Ralph Sampson III
G Sr. Lawrence Westbrook
G Jr. Al Nolen Jr.

Senior guard Devron Bostick and junior forward Trevor Mbakwe are on the Gopehrs bench in street clothes.  Freshman forward Royce White does not appear on the court or bench for Minnesota.