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Buffalo hands DePaul its first setback, Liberty wins eleventh straight

Junior guard Jayvon Graves scored a game-high 21 points as visiting Buffalo ended DePaul’s season opening nine-game winning streak with a 74-69 victory over the Blue Demons (9-1) at Chicago’s Wintrust Arena on Sunday.

The Bulls, coming off a 32-4 season a year ago, improved to 6-3.

Jalen Coleman-Lands tallied a team-high 17 points and Paul Reed, posting his seventh double-double of the season, scored 15 points and snatched eighteen rebounds for DePaul.

DePaul’s loss yesterday reduced the remaining number of undefeated teams in the country to eight.






Undefeated San Diego State (10-0) avoided a similar fate when Malachi Flynn, a 6-1 junior guard who averaged 15.8 points and 4.3 assists at Washington State two years ago, buried a long-range 3-pointer in the final second as the Aztecs narrowly defeated San Jose State 59-57 in a thriller at the Vieja Arena in San Diego. 

The ten straight wins to opener the season is the program’s best start in a decade.

Liberty (11-0) also remained unbeaten by defeating Grand Canyon University 70-61 in the Jerry Colangelo Classic in Phoenix on Sunday.  The Flames used a 15-0 surge in the second half to pull away from the upset-minded Antelopes, who fell to 4-7.

Caleb Homesley and Myo Baxter-Bell paced Liberty with 17 and 15 points, respectively.

Liberty will put its eleven-game winning streak on the line when it plays at Vanderbilt (6-2) on Thursday.

Fifth-ranked Virginia (8-1) returned to its winning ways following a blowout loss at Purdue on Wednesday by stifling seventh-ranked North Carolina 56-47.  It was the first time since the 1948-49 season that the Tar Heels, coming off a 74-49 pummeling at the hands of Ohio State on Wednesday, failed to score fifty points in back-to-back games.






In other Sunday action, three Atlantic 10 teams fared well with Saint Louis (8-1) downing Tulane 86-62, Richmond beating South Alabama 75-57 and 19th-ranked Dayton (7-1) defeating Saint Mary’s 78-68 in the Jerry Colangelo Classic in Phoenix. 

The Flyers, who led 46-25 at halftime, were led by Jalen Crutcher’s 21 points and six assists.

Ninth-ranked Gonzaga (10-1) used a flurry of late 3-pointers to stave off No. 22 Washington 83-76 at the Alaska Airlines Arena in Seattle in Sunday night action.  The Huskies dropped to 7-2 on the season.

Maryland-Eastern Shore (1-10) picked up its first win of the season with an 85-39 thrashing of Div. III Clarks Summit.  The previously winless Hawks had 26 steals in the game.

Darcy G. Richardson is a historian and the author of more than a dozen books. His latest is Loyola's Improbable Ramblers: 55 Years in the Making, available now on Amazon.

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