DePaul Freshman Turns Rosemont into Young's Town
Dec. 5, 2010
ROSEMONT, Ill. - Brandon Young officially made his mark on the "New Era" part of the DePaul basketball slogan Sunday night at Allstate Arena.
The irrepressible freshman scored a career-high 31 points in leading the Blue Demons to a 71-62 come-from-behind victory over Central Michigan.
It was the most points by a DePaul freshman since Quentin Richardson scored 31 points against California on Nov. 28, 1998.
Young made nine of 11 shots, including all six from three-point range---the fourth player in DePaul history to go perfect from beyond the arc.
His 31 points were the third-highest total by a BIG EAST player this season.
"No, I've never done that in a game before," Young said about going six-for-six from long distance. "I was hot, and my teammates did a good job of finding me.
"I had to settle down, not rush and take good shots."
After a first half in which DePaul (3-4) went scoreless for 9 minutes, 43 seconds and trailed 36-24 at halftime, the Blue Demons opened the second half with a 10-0 run.
That was just the beginning of a stirring comeback that had the Allstate Arena crowd on their feet screaming.
A Young basket followed by his back-to-back three-pointers and consecutive DePaul steals gave the home team a 50-48 lead with 9:14 left.
"Our press wears on other teams," said DePaul coach Oliver Purnell as Central Michigan finished with 28 turnovers. "They don't want to play that fast. Late in a game, their shots won't go down because their legs were tired."
Purnell emphasizes the final six minutes of a game at every practice.
On this night, at the 6:24 mark, DePaul went on a game-clinching 13-2 run. Young and Krys Faber had five points each and Tony Freeland three. Faber wound up with 10 points and five rebounds while freshman Cleveland Melvin had five blocked shots.
"Brandon Young and Tony Freeland (14 points, nine rebounds, three steals, two blocks) stepped up for us offensively," said Purnell, who is three wins shy of 400 for his career. "Sooner or later, you need a couple of BIG EAST-type players to score for you.
"Teams scout, and they decided to let him (Young) shoot jump shots. We took him off the ball, and he made shots."
In one of its worst stretches of this young season, DePaul went scoreless for 9 minutes, 43 seconds of the first half. In that span, Central Michigan scored 12-straight for a 19-5 lead. Young's three-pointer with 7:40 left in the first half ended the drought.
The Blue Demons made just two of their first 12 shots while committing seven turnovers in the first 12 minutes. It resulted in DePaul heading into the halftime locker room down by 12.
"Central Michigan took the fight to us in the first half," Purnell said. "We were a little bit back on our heels.
"After a little `encouraging,' the guys came out more aggressive in the second half. We were the scrappy, gritty DePaul team that we need to be."
Central Michigan (2-5) committed 17 turnovers in the second half.
"If we're down by 20, it doesn't matter," Young said. "Our style of play will bring us back "As long as we stick to our plan and get good shots, everything will be all right."
DePaul travels to Indiana State for a 7 p.m. game on Wednesday.