By R.L. Bynum
Walker Miller’s terrific season continues and Garrison Brooks put up a double-double but the news isn’t as good for Andrew Platek or Walker Kessler.
Miller clinched Monmouth’s 79–65 victory Sunday over Canisius on a 3-pointer with 1:32 left. He scored 14 of his career-high 24 points in the first half as the Hawks took a 47–26 halftime lead.
“I wanted to set the tone early and try to get in a groove,” Miller said. “I wanted to get back to what I do well. There’s going to be lots of ups and downs this year and I think we just want to keep grinding to get to where we want to be.”
Miller, who scored 23 points in the Hawks’ season opener at Charlotte, is averaging 14.6 points (third on the team) and a team-high 7.1 rebounds per game. After not attempting a 3-pointer in four seasons at Carolina, Miller is 4 of 14 from 3-point range this season.
Monmouth (7–1, 2–0 MAAC), coached by former UNC point guard King Rice, plays at St. John’s at 8:30 Thursday night (FS1).
Garrison Brooks has started every game for Mississippi State (6–2), and put up his first double-double of the season with 13 points and 10 rebounds in the Bulldogs’ 81–76 home loss Sunday against Minnesota.
Brooks is averaging 11.0 points and 7.4 rebounds, with his season-high 18 points in the Bulldogs’ season-opening victory over North Alabama.
Mississippi State’s other loss was 72–58 on Nov. 25 in the Bahamas against Louisville.
The Bulldogs face Colorado State at 2 p.m. Saturday (ESPNU) in Fort Worth, Texas, at the Basketball Hall of Fame Classic.
In the first half of Siena’s 77–72 overtime loss Friday to Manhattan College, Platek suffered what has been reported as an Achilles tendon injury. He is expected to be out three weeks.
He got hurt after missing a shot during the first half. In five games, Platek is averaging 9.0 points and 3.6 rebounds per game, shooting 40.9% from the floor and 31.3% from 3-point range.
His season-high was 12 points in his Saints’ debut, an 83–65 loss at Georgetown on Nov. 19. He scored 11 at Bucknell on Nov. 28 in a 65–56 overtime loss.
Siena is 3–6, 1–1 in the MAAC entering Saturday’s game at Holy Cross (ESPN+).
After putting up double-doubles in three of his previous four games, Auburn’s Walker Kessler got hurt early in Saturday’s 86–64 home win over Yale.
Kessler, who is averaging 7.9 points, 7.0 rebounds and 3.4 blocks while starting every game, had been suffering some lower leg pain and aggravated it during the game.
In eight minutes before getting hurt, Kessler blocked four shots. He already has more blocks this season (27) in eight games than he had for Carolina (25) in 29 games last season.
His status for Saturday’s 11:30 a.m. game against Nebraska in Atlanta (ESPN2) is unclear.
Brandon Huffman is averaging 9.6 points and 6.1 rebounds in his second season with Jacksonville State after averaging 10.4 points and 6.5 rebounds in 26 games last season. He put up a career-high on Jan. 23 last season at Austin Peay with 20 points.
He had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds on Nov. 13 in a 70–47 home win vs. Alabama A&M. His season-high is 15 points on Nov. 22 in a 78–70 loss in the Bahamas against Valparaiso.
The Gamecocks (3–4) play at VCU at 6 p.m. Wednesday (ESPN+).
In three games coming off the bench for Morgan State, Seventh Woods is averaging 6.7 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1 assist. His best game was 12 points against Hampton in a 60–47 win in Phoenix on Nov. 29.
Woods, whose freshman season at UNC was the 2016–17 national-championship season, transferred from South Carolina in the offseason. Last season was the only one he played with the Gamecocks, averaging 5.4 points per game.
The Bears (4–5) visit Longwood at 3 p.m. Saturday.
Photo via @MonmouthBBall