JMU men’s basketball beats Charlotte in season opener 79-74

Junior Matt Lewis notched his first career double-double on Wednesday evening, helping lead James Madison to a come-from-behind 79-74 victory over Charlotte in both schools’ men’s basketball season openers at the JMU Convocation Center.

JMU men’s basketball beats Charlotte in season opener 79-74
JMU basetball team in a huddle before the season opener. (Source: WHSV)

James Madison University Media Release

HARRISONBURG, Va. - Junior Matt Lewis notched his first career double-double on Wednesday evening, helping lead James Madison to a come-from-behind 79-74 victory over Charlotte in both schools’ men’s basketball season openers at the JMU Convocation Center.

Lewis racked up 22 points and a career-high 13 rebounds to lead the way, while sophomore Deshon Parker matched his career best with 17 points, adding seven boards and six assists. Junior Zach Jacobs blocked a pair of shots in addition to his 15 points and six boards.

The Dukes (1-0) trailed by as many as 12 in the first half, but used a 13-2 run to close the period, cutting the lead to one. The 49ers (0-1) traded leads with JMU to open the half, but the Dukes went ahead for good with a 7-0 run capped by a Parker layup that gave JMU a 54-48 lead with 11:46 to play.

On the evening, the Dukes made the most of its possessions, shooting 49.2% (29-of-59) from the field, while holding Charlotte to just a 28-of-69 (40.6%) performance on the night.

Junior Darius Banks battled through foul trouble to pick up 10 points and four boards, while freshman Michael Christmas had nine points and six rebounds across 22 minutes in his first collegiate action.

QUICK HITS- JMU won its season opener for the third straight season and fourth time in five years.- The victory marked the Dukes’ third straight over Charlotte, cutting the 49ers advantage in the all-time series to 5-3.

QUOTING COACH ROWE"I’m really pleased with my guys and how they responded tonight against a lot of adversity. It was just a matter of executing and I really liked the way they just got their legs under them and turned things around."

UP NEXTThe Dukes will hit the road this weekend to take on reigning national champion No. 11 Virginia in Charlottesville on Sunday, Nov. 10. Tipoff at John Paul Jones Arena is scheduled for 6 p.m.

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