Philly Sports Live

Wildcats tamed Leopards to open 2016-17 Season

Villanova PA: It’s Christmas day for College Basketball fans across the country as the start of the 2016-17 season began on Friday night as the Villanova Wildcats open their season against the Lafayette Leopards from the Pavilion on the Campus of Villanova University. Villanova enters the 2016-17 season as the defending National champions while Lafayette comes into 2016-17 off a terrible 6-24 season. The last time Villanova played Lafayette was in the 2nd round of the 2015 NCAA Tournament when Villanova was number 1 seed.

Villanova won the tip to start the game and the first points of the season came from Kris Jenkins who hit the winning shot to give Villanova the National Championship for the early 2-0 lead, Jalen Brunson would make it 5-0 on 3 pointer, Lafayette would get on the board with basket from Auston Evans to cut into the Wildcats lead.  Villanova would go on a 20-0 run over 5:44 to grow the lead to 25-2 before Leopards Nick Linder would hit 3 pointer with 10:18 left in 1st half but Villanova was in full control of this game & Lafayette just did not know how to answer for the hostile environment as Wildcats would take a 49-17 lead into halftime.

Lafayette got ball to star the 2nd half and would go on a small run to cut the lead down to 28 at 53-25 with 17:10 left in the 2nd half, The defense that Villanova was playing was way to much for Lafayette to handle in even to attempt a comeback, the 3pt shooting was on point for the Wildcats as they would make 15 of them on 41 shot attempts. a Sold out crowd at the Pavilion saw the defending champions get off to a good start in 2016-17 with a 88-48 win over Lafayette & now have to get ready for a Gavitt Game encounter against Purdue on Monday while Lafayette try to rebound from this loss as they prepare for matchup against Saint Peters also on Monday night.

Final Stats:

Villanova Wildcats:
Jalen Brunson: 17 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists
Kris Jenkins: 16 points, 5 rebounds, 4-10 from 3 pt range
Mikal Bridges: 16 Points 8 rebounds, 4 assists
Josh Hart: 13 Points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists

Lafayette Leopards:
Matt Klinweski: 12 points,4 rebounds
Nick Linder: 10 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists,
Eric Stafford: 7 points, 1 rebound, 1 assist

Villanova Coach Jay Wright:

Lafayette Coach Fran O’Hanlon: