In front of 1125 people, Brandon McGee dropped a double-double with 20 points and 11 boards, Devonta White put up 19, 3-5 from behind the arc and Captains Jihad Ali and James Fields each contributed 12 and 14 respectively. But more importantly, the Panthers put together a complete team victory over a out-matched opponent in the Hornets.
While the Panthers will not enjoy a 57-34 advantage in rebounds every night, they played better than their less talented opponent, which has at times been a struggle in recent years. Under the previous coaching staff the Panthers seemed to have a tough time not playing down to inferior teams. In their fist game under Coach Hunter, the team showed flaws and growing pains, but it was clear that they came to play, and did so until the final buzzer.
The Panthers shot 52% in the second half and 45% overall. The team also came away with 10 steals and six blocks on the night.
As nice as it was to win and see a 90 spot on the scoreboard, Oglethorpe comes to town Saturday and many things will need to be addressed before then, like shooting 7-27 from three and 13-22 from the free throw line. However, the team now has game footage to go off of and can see their mistakes against a different color jersey. So, Coach Hunter can now go back and work on the details, with any first-game nerves out of the way.