Miami basketball pulls away late from LaSalle

The Miami basketball team held LaSalle without a field goal for 3:49 late in the game in a 84-77 win over the the Explorers.

Dec 16, 2023; Coral Gables, Florida, USA; Miami Hurricanes forward Norchad Omier (15) is introduced
Dec 16, 2023; Coral Gables, Florida, USA; Miami Hurricanes forward Norchad Omier (15) is introduced / Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
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On Saturday afternoon, the Miami basketball team needed a late 10-2 run to put away LaSalle 84-77 in Coral Gables. Wooga Poplar scored a career-high 25 points in the win. Miami held LaSalle without a field goal for 3:49 and used a 10-2 run to pull away late and earn the win. Miami held on after LaSalle made two threes in the last 35 seconds.

Bensley Joseph closed out the scoring making two free throws with seven seconds left. Norchad Omier finished with 23 points and eight rebounds. The Miami basketball team led by as many as 18 points before LaSalle rallied to get within 71-67. That's when Miami went on the 10-2 run to put the game away.

Matthew Cleveland scored 10 points and had six rebounds in the first half as Miami led 45-33 at halftime. Cleveland finished with 14 points and nine rebounds. Nijel Pack was the fourth Hurricane with 11 points and seven assists. Khalil Brantley led La Salle with 23 points, four rebounds and three assists while shooting 10-18 from the floor.

Miami played much better in the first half. The Hurricanes held LaSalle to 40.0 percent from the floor and four of 14 on three-point attempts in the first half. La Salle shot 55.2 percent in the second half and made seven of its 16 three-point attempts. Miami shot 57.6 percent in the first half but made just three of its 10 three-point shots.

The Hurricanes shot 44.4 percent in the second half but made just one of five three-point attempts. Miami held off La Salle by making 14 of 17 from the free throw line in the second half and 18 of 21 for the game. Omier finished 7-7 from the line and Poplar was 5-6. La Salle made six of its seven free throw attempts.

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After falling behind 2-0, Miami scored the next six points and never trailed again. La Salle tied the game at six, Miami answered with a 7-0 run and held the lead for 38:06 on Saturday. Miami improves to 8-2 with the win. Miami will host Stonehill on Friday and North Florida on December 29 to conclude non-conference play.