Thanksgiving evening got off to a great start as the #12 ranked Cincinnati Bearcats crushed Wyoming 78-53 in the championship game of the Cayman Islands Classic. The Bearcats defeated Buffalo and Richmond to earn a spot in the title game, and then dispatched the Cowboys without any issue to bring home the hardware.
Cincinnati shot 50% from the field (and 50% from three) for the game, and committed just 10 turnovers. Gary Clark led the Bearcats in scoring with 17 points, and Kyle Washington (16 points, 11 rebounds) nabbed the double-double in the win. Jacob Evans (10 points) also broke into double digit scoring for Cincinnati.
Hayden Dalton, Louis Adams, and Alan Herndon all scored in double figures for the Cowboys.
The Bearcats got off to a hot start, building a 20-2 lead by the 10:54 mark of the first half. Clark killed it, scoring 13 of the first 15 points scored by Cincinnati and leading Wyoming by himself for the majority of the first half.
Clark led the Bearcats in the first half with those 13 points on 6-for-8 shooting from the floor to go with one rebound and a steal. Kyle Washington chipped in six first half rebounds, and Nysier Brooks had two steals in the first 20 minutes.
Dalton led the Cowboys with seven first half point as Cincinnati’s defense forced Wyoming into 21.7% shooting from the field and an abysmal 2-for-11 (18.2%) from three. Wyoming was held without a field goal for the first 9:24 of the game, and didn’t break double digit scoring until the 5:24 mark of the half.
Washington gave the Bearcats a 20 point lead midway through the second half on a layup, and the Cowboys never got closer than that the rest of the way.
Wyoming went to the line 25 times in the game, getting 17 of their total points from the charity stripe.
Otherwise, the Bearcat defense was sound, holding the Cowboys to 31.3% shooting from the field and forced Wyoming into 14 turnovers. Cincinnati added eight steals and five blocks in the game as well.
Shoutout to the Bearcat faithful that made the arduous journey to the Cayman Islands for the tournament!
For his performance over the course of the Cayman Islands Classic, Clark was named tournament MVP.
Next up, Cincinnati hosts Alabama State on Monday at 7pm. The game will be televised on ESPNU.