Men’s Basketball Falls in Home Opener to FNU, 81-79

Antonio Ruby (30) scored 14 points on 4-of-8 shooting versus Florida National on Nov. 7, 2017
Antonio Ruby (30) scored 14 points on 4-of-8 shooting versus Florida National on Nov. 7, 2017

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NORTH MIAMI, Fla. (Nov. 7, 2017) – A game-winning shot by Florida National's Jessy Cantinol as time expired handed the Johnson & Wales men's basketball team (0-1) an 81-79 loss in the team's home opener on Tuesday night.

The Wildcats led by as many as 14 points but 16-2 run by the Conquistadors tied the game with 10:46 left in the game. JWU battled with FNU as the lead changed hands six times before the game-winning shot by Cantinol.

The Wildcats were led Nick Preradovic, who posted 20 points on 67-of-20 shooting, including six treys. Joining Preadovic in double-digit scoring were also Gino Fils-Aime (17 pts.) and Antonio Ruby (14 pts.). Fils-Aime converted 6-of-16 shooting as well as 5-of-9 3-point attempts, while Ruby made 4-of-8 from the field and was 5-of-6 from the free-throw line.  Isa Brandon led JWU with a game-high 10 rebounds, five blocks, and four steals.

For the game, the Wildcats shot 45.5 percent from the floor (30-of-66) and was 13-of-32 from beyond the arc (40.6 percent). FNU drained 27-of-59 attempts (45.8 percent) and made 9-of-23 shots from downtown (39.1 percent). JWU held a 41-32 edge in total rebounds but committed 24 turnovers to just 18 for Florida National.

The Wildcats will travel to Montgomery, Alabama, to take part in the Veteran's Day Classic hosted by Faulkner University. JWU will take on Talladega College on Friday, Nov. 10. Tipoff is set for 6:00 pm.