Hawaii got out to a fast start, sputtered, but recovered strongly in beating visiting New Orleans 82-58 in a nonconference men’s college basketball game Tuesday.
The Rainbow Warriors improved to 15-10 while the Privateers fell to 15-12 before a gathering of around 3,000 at the Stan Sheriff Center.
Vander Joaquim led all scorers with 19 points and had nine rebounds despite limited playing time after halftime. Joston Thomas added 16 and Shaquille Stokes had 11 off the bench.
Brandon Knight and Brandon Canady paced New Orleans with 15 points each.
Hawaii enjoyed leads of 15-2 and 26-6 early in the first half, but New Orleans battled back and cut the margin to 45-40 with 15:50 left in the game.
The Rainbows regained control with three straight baskets by Joaquim fueling an 8-0 run that gave UH a 54-40 lead with 11:18 left. On Joaquim’s third basket of the sequence, the 6-foot-10 center stole the ball at mid court and dribbled in for a dunk.
Hawaii led 39-30 at halftime as Zane Johnson, Hauns Brereton and Thomas all scored nine points and Joaquim added eight.