Miami basketball Category 5 eliminated from TBT with shorthanded team

PROVIDENCE, RI - MARCH 17: (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
PROVIDENCE, RI - MARCH 17: (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /
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Category 5 the team made up of mostly Miami basketball alums lost to Blue Collar U made up of mostly Buffalo alums 78-61  in The Basketball Tournament on Tuesday night. Category 5 was playing without leading scorer Rian Brown and wing Durand Scott, both former Hurricanes.

Blue Collar U led 27-9 at the end of the first quarter and expanded the lead to 20 points in the second. Category 5 cut the lead to 36-23 before trailing 47-29 at halftime. By the end of the third quarter, Category 5 was able to cut the deficit to 63-51 entering the fourth. Blue Collar U led 69-60 at the Elam ending.

A foul back Zach Johnson on a C.J. Masinburg three-point attempt with one second on the shot clock on the first possession of the Elam Ending put Category 5 into a further hole. Massinburg made all three free throws to put Blue Collar U up 72-60. Blue Collar U outscored Category 5 9-1 in the Elam Ending for a 78-61 victory.

The nine-point deficit entering the Elam Ending was the closest Category 5 was after the first quarter. Without Brown and Scott, Category 5 had a difficult path. Getting to the third round in its first performance in The Basketball Tournament was an impressive performance. Blue Collar U moves on to Dayton on Saturday.

Category played primarily a six-man rotation with Brown and Scott out due to Covid protocols. Shannon Bogues who played at Stephen F. Austin from 2017-19 led Category 5 with 20 points. Miami basketball alums Davon Reed and Zach Johnson scored 12 each and Kamari Murphy contributed 10.

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Category 5 laid a good foundation for future TBTs. Reed and Murphy should be cornerstone players for future tournaments. Brown and Scott being forced to miss the game on Tuesday was unfortunate. The run by Category 5 in the TBT was the best from a Miami basketball “team” since the 2016 run to the regional semifinals.