Created on Wednesday, 21 November 2012 Written by MARK SCHMETZER,Associated Press
CINCINNATI (AP) — Campbell had a terrific second half against No. 22 Cincinnati on Tuesday.
It wasn't enough to make up for a terrible first half.
Big South Conference scoring leader Darren White scored 19 of his 22 points in the second half and the Fighting Camels shot 63 percent (17 of 27) from the field to cut a 25-point second-half deficit to 11 before the Bearcats pulled away for a 91-72 win.
Campbell coach Robbie Laing was pleased with his team's comeback in the Global Sports Invitational game.
"That bodes well for us in the future," Laing said.
Cashmere Wright scored a career-high 28 points and the Bearcats remained undefeated. Jaquon Parker had a season high with 21 points, and Sean Kilpatrick added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Bearcats (4-0).
Cincinnati is scheduled to play its first road game Friday against Iowa State as the GSI continues in Las Vegas.
White came in leading the Big South Conference with 25.5 points per game. Trey Freeman scored a season-high 17 for the Fighting Camels, the preseason favorite in the Big South's North Division, while Darian Hooker added 13 and Reco McCarter finished with 10.
The Bearcats dominated inside, outrebounding Campbell 50-28 and finishing with nine blocked shots to Campbell's two. They limited the Camels to 35.3 percent from the field in the first half.
"I think the obvious difference in the game was the rebounding," Laing said. "That was the most imposing defensive team we've played. We weren't tied together like we needed to be at the beginning.
"They're a little bigger than us, and we weren't the cohesive unit we needed to be early in the game. Cincinnati sat on top of us defensively. They smothered us. We couldn't reverse the ball, and they forced us into playing one-on-one, and they're too long for us to convert many one-on-ones."
But Cincinnati continued to struggle with free throws. The Bearcats, who were shooting 53.3 percent (40 of 75) from the line coming in, went 18 of 34 in the first game between the two teams.
"We've got to stay in the gym," Wright said. "It's got to pay off. The amount of time we spend shooting free throws has got to pay off."
Wright, whose previous career high was 25 in a 101-70 win over Radford last Dec. 17, scored 13 and Parker added 11 to lead Cincinnati to a 46-28 halftime lead.
Cincinnati never trailed after Wright made the first of two consecutive 3-pointers to snap a 2-2 tie with 17:30 left in the first half.
Parker gave Cincinnati a 21-point lead twice, the first on a 3-pointer from the left corner with 6:35 left before halftime and the second with a driving layup along the right baseline with 4:36 remaining.
"Obviously, it was a tale of two halves," Cincinnati Mick Cronin said. "Fortunately, we dominated the first half."