Senior guard Zach Johnson scored 24 points and sophomore guard Chris Lykes added 17 as Miami earned a 78-76 victory over Fresno State on Friday in the semifinals of the Wooden Legacy Tournament in Fullerton, Calif.
Johnson’s rebound and follow-up dunk off a Lykes miss with 0.2 seconds remaining was the difference for the Hurricanes.
Junior guard Dejan Vasiljevic scored 12 points as the Hurricanes (5-0) remained undefeated. Miami will face either Seton Hall or Hawaii in the tournament championship game on Sunday.
Lykes and Vasiljevic have scored in double figures in all five games for the Hurricanes this season.
Senior guard Braxton Huggins scored 28 points for Fresno State (2-2), while senior guard Deshon Taylor added 25. Taylor hit three free throws with 13.4 seconds remaining to tie the game at 76 before Johnson won it for Miami.
The Bulldogs used an 11-4 run late in the first half to take a 41-37 lead into halftime. Huggins’ 20 first-half points were tied for second most in a half in Wooden Legacy Tournament history.
Fresno State got 74 of its 76 points from its starters. In Thursday’s tournament quarterfinal victory over Northwestern, the Bulldogs received 69 of their 78 points from players in the starting lineup.
The Bulldogs outrebounded the Hurricanes 43-29.
Miami’s defense held Fresno State to one field goal over its last 10 attempts. The Bulldogs did not make a field goal over the last 2:33 of the game.
Senior center Ebuka Izundu added 10 points for Miami. Junior forward Nate Grimes had 15 rebounds for Fresno State.
Miami was coming off an 85-49 victory over La Salle in Thursday’s tournament quarterfinal. It was the second-largest margin of victory in Wooden Legacy history after San Diego State’s 37-point victory over Sacramento State last year.
It was the first-ever game between Miami and Fresno State. Miami entered 2-3 in previous matchups against the Mountain West Conference. Fresno State entered 2-3 against ACC teams.
—Field Level Media