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Paradise Jam 2022 Tips Off at UVI’s Elridge Blake Sports and Fitness Center

Paradise Jam 2022 is in full swing as eight teams took to the court Monday at the newly named Elridge Blake Sports and Fitness Center on the campus of the University of the Virgin Islands.

George Mason’s Oduro Josh (white jersey) blocks Boston College’s CJ Penha #24 in the final game of the opening day of Paradise Jam 2022. (Photo by Mark J Daniel)

Boston College University 71 – George Mason University 56
Boston College started fast and put this game out of reach early as the Eagles flew away from the Patriots in their 71-56 win in the final game of day one of Paradise Jam 2022. Boston College was led by Makai Ashton-Langton a graduate student from Worcester, Massachusetts, with 17 points. CJ Penha Jr, also a graduate student, contributed 12 points and 8 rebounds in the victory. Boston College shot 48% from the field and 57% from behind the three-point line. Victor Bailey Jr. led the way for George Mason, scoring 15 points and grabbing 7 rebounds.

Makai Ashton-Langford of Boston College cuts through the Patriot’s defense and scored the off balance layup. (Photo by Mark J Daniel)

Drake University 80 – University at Buffalo 72
The opening game of 2022 Paradise Jam featured University at Buffalo from the Mid-American Conference doing battle with Drake University from the Missouri Valley Conference. This contest was close from the opening tip to the final buzzer, with Buffalo leading most of the game. Drake’s sophomore guard Tucker DeVries drained a jumper with 3:16 left in the game and the Bulldogs held on to that lead to secure the eight-point win. DeVries led Drake with 22 points and teammate Darnell Brodie added 10 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. LaQuill Hardnett came off the bench for Buffalo and poured in a game-high 26 points and collected 12 rebounds for the losing team.

University of Wyoming 78 – Howard University 71
The University of Wyoming used a good shooting performance to outlast the Bison of Howard University in the second game of Paradise Jam 2022 opening day. The Cowboys of Wyoming shot 61.7% from the field, with eight players recording at least two made baskets in their 78-71 victory over Howard University. Senior guard Hunter Maldonado dropped 28 points and Ethan Anderson added 11 points for the winning team. Howard University had five players reach double digits in scoring but it was enough to lasso the Wyoming Cowboys. Sophomore Elijah Hawkins played bigger than his listed 5’11” frame leading the Bison with 17 points and distributing 6 assists. Junior Steve Settle III added 14 points and grabbed 8 rebounds for Howard University.

Tarleton State University 89 – Belmont University 81
Game three of the 2022 Paradise Jam Basketball Tournament saw Tarleton State University from Stephenville, Texas, facing Belmont University from Nashville, Tennessee. The Texan Riders of Tarleton State took advantage of 6 Bruin turnovers and went on an 18-2 run midway through the first half, taking a 13-point lead into intermission. Belmont kept chipping away at the lead in the second half closing the gap to as little as six points. But Tarleton State held on for the 89-81 victory. Sophomore Freddy Hicks played well on both ends of the court, registering 26 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 steals for Tarleton State University. Senior guard Ben Sheppard was the top Bruin with 21 points and 5 assists.

The tournament continues Saturday, as Buffalo at University plays Howard University at 4:15 p.m., followed by Belmont University versus George Mason University. The games will be played at the Elridge Blake Sports and Fitness Center at the University of the Virgin Islands.

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