Over the next few days, Buffalo will undertake a four game road trip throughout Canada and the Bahamas. Last night, the Bulls played their first of two games in Canada against the University of Guelph. Although there wasn't a live stream, there are many things that can be taken from looking at the box score for the 84-73 win. Something to note down: the game wasn't played in standard NCAA terms, but with 10 minute quarters and a 24 second shot clock.
The game started with the combination of Blake Hamilton, Willie Conner, David Kadiri, CJ Massinburg, and Nick Perkins. The biggest shocker in that starting five is David Kadiri, who had spurts of really great play last year that was overshadowed by a knee injury.
The Bulls had their fair share of problems in the first half. Guelph unleashed havoc from the three point line, shooting 47% before the final 20 minutes. Midway through the second quarter, the only shots they had made were three pointers. Many Bulls struggled while David Kadiri and Nick Perkins were shooting well. Buffalo went into the half with a 45-34 lead.
The second half was better but the Bulls' shooting slowed down slightly more. Guelph's three point attack halted to a meager 31% on top of their 34% shooting. Kadiri, Perkins, and Quate McKinzie were the only ones who seemed to shoot well. Luckily, Buffalo was never in any real danger of losing the game, but head coach Nate Oats will tell you he wasn't pleased with the showing.
David Kadiri and Nick Perkins lead the way for the Bulls with 14 points a piece. They also had seven and five rebounds respectively. Another player who had a strong effort was freshman Quate McKinzie with eight points and seven rebounds. McKinzie had the second best shooting percentage of the day at 80%.
There shouldn't be too much concern since this is Buffalo's first competition in a while and also the first with the incoming freshmen. Although Blake Hamilton struggled and only managed 3-12 shooting, I expect this to be an outlier. The biggest problem on the offensive side of the ball was three point shooting, where Buffalo only made 12% beyond the arc. Another surprise was an 0-5 effort by freshman James Jones.
The Bulls stay in Canada today to take on the York University Lions. More will be taken from that game since I'll be in attendance.