Murphy, No. 14 Minnesota breeze past W. Carolina
Jordan Murphy recorded his fourth double-double with 23 points and 11 rebounds, and No. 14 Minnesota pulled away in the second half to beat Western Carolina 92-64 on Sunday in Minneapolis.
Amir Coffey had 15 points, five rebounds and four assists, Dupree McBrayer added 14 points, and Nate Mason chipped in with 13 points for the Gophers, who outscored the Catamounts 50-31 in the second half.
Minnesota (4-0) stayed undefeated with a home game against Alabama A&M scheduled for Tuesday.
Freshman guard Matt Halvorsen scored 17 points for Western Carolina (1-3), hitting 5 of 7 from 3-point range.
Deriece Parks added 11 points for the Catamounts, who shot 37.3 percent from the field. Minnesota made 50 percent of its field-goal attempts.
With the Catamounts hitting from deep, Western Carolina stayed close to the Gophers, who held a big advantage down low with Murphy and center Reggie Lynch.
The Catamounts closed within 32-30 with 5:43 left in the first half on a layup by Marc Gosselin before Minnesota went into the locker room on a 10-3 run. Halvorsen kept Western Carolina close early in the second half with four points to cut the gap to 45-40 before the Gophers pulled away.
Touted freshman Isaiah Washington scored 10 points off the bench for the Gophers, who outscored Western Carolina 38-20 in the paint.
Minnesota scored 32 points off 20 turnovers to win its second straight game by at least 20 points.
A game after nearing a triple-double, Lynch had six points, eight rebounds and five blocked shots while dealing with a bit of foul trouble.