No. 18 Miami returns, routed by Eastern Kentucky
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) -- Miami returned from a lengthy break and hardly resembled a nationally ranked team.
The No. 18 Hurricanes felt apart in the second half and got routed by Eastern Kentucky 72-44 on Friday night.
Miami hadn't played since beating Savannah State 70-39 on Dec. 8.
"We were very bad from start to finish. They were very good," coach Jim Larranaga said.
"Our lack of focus was very, very clear, whether it was because of the 10-day layoff or not respecting the opponent. Whatever the reason, there is no good reason not to play as hard as you can all the time," he said.
It was the most-lopsided loss for the Hurricanes since they were beaten 105-64 at North Carolina on Jan. 31, 2007. This was their most one-sided home loss since Virginia beat them 82-54 on March 1, 1997.
Corey Walden scored 18 points to help lead the Colonels of the Ohio Valley Conference to the convincing win.
The Colonels (6-4) led by two at the break and pulled away with a 22-2 run early in the second half. Isaac McGlone keyed the surge with three 3-pointers, and his third conversion from behind the arc made it 43-27 with 13:21 remaining.
Miami (9-2) was scoreless for an 8:27 stretch until Davon Reed made two free throws with 10:40 left to cut Eastern Kentucky's lead to 43-29.
"Our whole goal going into the game was there's no way we were going to allow Miami to get to 50," Eastern Kentucky coach Jeff Neubauer said. "You can have 49 points but they're not getting 50. Somehow that came true here tonight."
The Colonels ran off eight straight points on consecutive 3-pointers from Timmy Knipp and Jaylen Babb-Harrison's layup for a 51-29 lead with 8:49 remaining.
Knipp scored 17 points and shot 5 for 9 on 3-pointers. Eric Stutz added 13, and McGlone had 12.
Reed's 3-pointer with 8:07 left ended a field goal drought of 10:33 for Miami. The Hurricanes shot 29 percent from the field.
Sheldon McClellan led the Hurricanes with 14 points.
"It's one thing if you miss shots, but we didn't share the ball very well," Larranaga said. "Because of that we didn't defend at all. We gave them everything they wanted, no matter what."
Both teams struggled at the start. The Colonels led 5-3 through the first 7:23. The Hurricanes missed eight of their first nine shots.
Miami rallied from an eight-point deficit and tied it at 25 late in the first half.
Eastern Kentucky: The Colonels are 5-0 when leading at halftime.
Miami: Guard Angel Rodriguez, the Hurricanes' second-leading scorer with a 14.2 average, scored one point. He missed all six shots from the field.
Eastern Kentucky: Visits Florida Atlantic on Monday.
Miami: Faces Providence at the Barclays Center in New York on Monday.
ANOTHER EXTENDED STAY
The Colonels will stay in South Florida for a game Monday at Florida Atlantic. The Colonels had a Thanksgiving road trip that featured games at Southern Utah and Brigham Young and also traveled to Australia and played four games during the summer.