Best… Basketball… Ever!
Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic Brings Top U.S. College Basketball Teams to Montego Bay
Hoops action dominates the weekend at MBCC
Montego Bay, Jamaica (November 19, 2018) – Record crowds turned out to see the 2018 Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic College Basketball Tournament this weekend, as top teams from the United State battled for the Championship of ‘The Rock’ at the Montego Bay Convention Center.
Over 2,000 boisterous fans, a combination of Jamaica natives and visitors from the United States, came to check out the one of a kind event and cheer for their favorite teams. They were treated to eight exciting contests featuring top talent from American universities.
“We had a great weekend of basketball action, featuring some fantastic teams and outstanding performances,” Jacob Ridenhour, Executive Director of the Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic said. “It was incredible to be back in Jamaica at the Montego Bay Convention Centre. We are already excited about and thinking towards the 2019 installment of the Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic!”
On the court, day one action Friday was intense, as nearly every game was hotly contested into the final minutes and produced some outstanding team and individual performances.
The opening game of the 2018 Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic saw the Austin Peay Governors narrowly edge the Central Connecticut Blue Devils, 80-78. CCSU is coached by former collegiate All-American and 15-year NBA veteran Donyell Marshall. Sophomore guard Terry Taylor paced the Governors with 21 points and 17 rebounds. Jarrett Givens chipped in 16 points and three assists, while senior guard Zach Glotta scored 13 points off the bench. The Blue Devils received a standout performance from freshman guard Ian Krishnan with 20 points on seven of 12 shooting, including four of eight from three-point range.
In game two action, the Campbell Camels of the Big South Conference took down the Florida A&M (FAMU) Rattlers of the MEAC by a 66-59 margin. Campbell overcame a nine-point halftime deficit to earn the victory, outscoring the Rattlers 45-21 in the second half. Senior Chris Clemmons sparked the Camels with 27 points, matching the top scoring total of day one action. Rattlers guard Justin Ravenel led the way for FAMU with 25 points on eight of 12 shooting from behind the three-point arc.
The evening session began with one of the most impressive team efforts of the day, as American Athletic Conference member South Florida took control of the game early and never looked back, defeating the Ohio Bobcats of the Mid-American Conference, 73-46. Four Bobcats scored in double figures, including 11 points and 8 rebounds in just 22 minutes from Alexis Yetna, a native of Paris, France. Ohio guard Teyvion Kirk led the way for the Bobcats, contributing 13 points to go along with four rebounds and two assists.
The much anticipated homecoming for Jamaica-born Hoyas coach Patrick Ewing produced a near capacity crowd at the Montego Bay Convention Centre for the final game of the day, as Georgetown took on Loyola Marymount (LMU) from the West Coast Conference. The Lions overcame a partisan, pro-Hoyas crowd to upset the Big East Conference power by a final score of 65-52.
Senior guard James Bateman took over the game on the offensive end of the floor for LMU, equaling the day one top scoring total for the day with 27 points, including a perfect 13 for 13 from the foul line. LMU owned the glass, out rebounding the Hoyas 42-30.
Leading the way for Georgetown was Senior Jessie Govan, who recorded a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds. Georgetown Freshman Josh LeBanc provided a spark off the bench, as the 6’ 7” freshman contributed 12 points and five rebounds.
Day two on Sunday at the Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic began with the much anticipated match-up between Georgetown and South Florida and would not disappoint.
The Hoyas would need overtime to dispatch the Bulls, 76-73. Govan, the Hoyas 6’ 10” center, recorded his second 20+ point game of the Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic, dropping 27 points and grabbing six rebounds while also blocking two shots. Freshman guard James Akinjo added 14 points and dished out five assists.
The Bulls were paced by sophomore guard David Collins with 21 points, including four of five from three-point range. Complementing Collins’ efforts were Alexis Yenta, notching a double-double with 11 points and a tournament high 17 rebounds, and LaQuincy Rideauwith 13 points and 5 assists.
Georgetown improved to 4-1 on the young season, while the loss was the first of the year for South Florida, dropping them to 3-1.
The afternoon session of the second annual Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic wrapped up with Campbell taking a six-point decision over Austin Peay, 78-72. The win improved the Camels to 2-0 on the weekend, clinching the championship of Rose Hall Division of the tournament.
Campbell’s Chris Clemons led the Camel’s charge to the championship, recording one of the event’s best all-around performances with 34 points (a tournament high), six rebounds and five assists. Junior guard Cory Gensler played sidekick to Clemons, scoring 25 points while shooting 10 of 13 from the field, including five of seven from behind the three-point line.
The Camels’ pulled away from the Govs on the strength of their three-point shooting, connecting on 12 of 24 attempts from behind the arc. Four Austin Peay Governors scored in double figures, led by sophomore Terry Taylor’s double-double, notching 17 points and collecting 10 rebounds.
Campbell improves to 3-2 on the year with their two victories in Montego Bay, while Austin Peay falls to 2-3 after dropping both decisions on the weekend.
In Sunday’s third game of the day, Loyola Marymount’s 65-56 win over Ohio clinched the championship of the Montego Bay Division. LMU becomes the second team to claim the title of the tournament’s top division, joining the Florida State Seminoles who recorded two victories on their way to top honors in 2017.
The Lions struggled to pull away from the Bobcats in the first half, clinging to a slim three-point lead at the intermission. Ohio continued to play tough in the second half against the multi-talented LMU club, and only in the final minutes did the Lions secure the win.
Leading the way for Loyola Marymount was senior guard James Bateman, who followed his 27-point performance in LMU’s first game, with 16 points and 5 assists in the contest. Senior guard Jeffrey McClendon came off the bench to play 30 minutes and lift the Lions, scoring 15 points while taking just five shots. LMU center Mattias Markusson (7’3” – Stockholm, Sweden) contributed 12 points and six rebounds in the winning effort.
Ohio received solid play across the board, with three Bobcats scoring in double figures, including sophomore forward Jason Carter, who scored 18 points and grabbed 5 rebounds before fouling out of the game.
Ultimately, struggles from the three-point line hindered the Bobcats efforts, as they connected on just four of 24 attempts against LMU after making just two of 29 threes in their opening game against South Florida.
Loyola Marymount improved to a perfect 5-0 on the season with the win and victory over Georgetown on Friday. Ohio’s mark drops to 2-2 following the trip to Montego Bay.
In the final game of the 2018 Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic, Central Connecticut took to the hard wood against Florida A&M. The Blue Devils used double-digit scoring performances by five players to knock off the Rattlers 89-75.
Tyler Kohl’s near triple double (20 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists) paced the Blue Devils, who connected on 66.7% of their field goal attempts for the game. Junior Jamir Coleman, senior Deion Bute, freshman Ian Krishnan and junior Joe Hugley all scored in double digits for CCSU.
FAMU struggled to find the bottom of the net, shooting 35.5% from the field and connected on just six of 26 three-point attempts (23.1%). Justin Ravanel managed to contribute 14 points for the Rattlers, despite shooting just one for 14 from the field. The senior guard made his mark at the free throw line, hitting 11 of 14 attempts. Junior guard Rod Melton, Jr. was a bright spot for FAMU off the bench, scoring 13 points and grabbing four rebounds while distributing three assists and making four steals in 27 minutes of action.
Central Connecticut improves to 3-2 on the season with the win. Florida A&M’s record falls to 2-2.
TV J, TV J Sports and the RJRGleaner Communications Group, proud partners of the Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic, are pleased to announce the All-Tournament Team for both the Montego Bay and Rose Hall Divisions.
MONTEGO BAY DIVISION (Georgetown; South Florida; Ohio; Loyola Marymount)
Jessie Govaan, Georgetown
Alexis Yetna, South Florida
David Collins, South Florida
Jason Carter, Ohio
Mattias Markusson, Loyola Marymount
MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER
James Batemon, Loyola Marymount
ROSE HALL DIVISION (Florida A&M; Central Connecticut; Austin Peay; Campbell)
Justin Ravanel, Florida A&M
Tyler Kohl, Central Connecticut
Terry Taylor, Austin Peay
Cory Gentler, Campbell
Jarrett Givens, Austin Peay
MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER
Chris Clemons, Campbell
For more information about next year’s Third Annual Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic, including participating teams (to be announced in early 2019), travel, ticket and sponsorship opportunities, visit JamaicaClassic.com, like us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/JerseyMikesJamaicaClassic/), and follow us on Instagram (@jamaicaclassic) and Twitter (@jamaica_classic).
Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic – Media Contact
Frank M. Cuervo
E: [email protected]