FREDERICTON, NB – The UNB Varsity Reds Men's basketball team drop their first game of the Eric Garland Tournament 97-88 to the UPEI Panthers.
The Varsity Reds came out slow, trailing from the get go. UPEI found luck from the charity stripe getting 13 of their 23 chances in the first half. UNB struggled to get any runs going early, trailing by as much as 14 in the early part of the half.
It felt great, we have the best fans in the conference or even in the country by far," said Javon Masters. "So for me to energize them get them back into the game it was a big step that I took."
Out of the locker room, UNB kept their elevated play, not letting the Panthers pull away as they did in the first.
UNB improved their accuracy through three shooting 48 per cent, while maintaining their 75 per cent free throw percentage. All of the UPEI took part, as the Panthers bench scored 26 of the 70 UPEI points through three quarters.
Near the end of the fourth, UPEI began to pull away, focusing their defense on shutting down Masters and going on a run of their own.
The Panthers led by 11 approaching the final minute of the game.
Despite the loss, Javon Masters scored a career-high 41 points.
"It was good, it would have been better to get the win but to know I scored over 40, it's still a little bit of an accomplishment."
Both teams will continue play tomorrow, UPEI at 4:00 and UNB at 8:00 at the Richard J. Currie Center.
Michael Bourgeois for UNB Communications