Coppenrath, Sorrentine Lead Cats to Exhibition Win

Taylor Coppenrath and T.J. Sorrentine scored 13 of the team’s 16 points in overtime to lift Vermont to a 84-82 win over the 320 All-Stars in a men’s college basketball exhibition game Tuesday night at Patrick Gym. Coppenrath finished with a game-high 33 and Sorrentine, in his first action since missing the 2002-03 season with wrist injuries, added 18 as the Catamounts held off a late charge from the visitors. The comeback bid by the 320 All-Stars, a team of former college standouts representing the Upstate New York AAU, was paced by former Virginia standout Harold Deane who scored 32 points, 24 after halftime. Coppenrath tallied eight early points, as Vermont used a balanced attack with four different players hitting three-point field goals to take a 35-28 advantage at the break. In the second half, Coppenrath scored 12 points in the first seven minutes as UVM opened up a 58-43 lead. But the All-Stars would battle back using the combination of good long-range shooting and poor Vermont free throw shooting (4-for-11 in second half). Five straight three-pointers by five different players triggered a 17-2 run by the All-Stars who grabbed a 63-62 lead with 5:43 to play. With 2:16 to go, Coppenrath hit a pair of free throws to make it 68-66 before Deane would tie it with 25 seconds left. Scotty Jones had a chance to put Vermont ahead but missed a pair from the line with three seconds left in regulation. After a Devonaire Deas bucket to open the extra session, Sorrentine and Coppenrath would take over to push UVM ahead by seven with 23 seconds left. Deane would close it out with the final five points, including his last hoop at the buzzer. In addition to Deane, who was an all-ACC guard at Virginia, Deas (Florida State) added 15 and Frank Wilkins tallied 11. Also, Gerald Johnson had a game-high 10 rebounds. Coppenrath went 13-for-19 from the floor, 2-for-3 from behind the arc and 5-for-5 from the line while grabbing six boards Sorrentine also hit a pair of treys and had six rebounds and four assists. Jones chipped in with 11 points, a team-high nine rebounds and three blocks. David Hehn played his usual solid floor game and had five points and seven rebounds. Germain Njila also had eight boards as the Cats outrebounded their opponent, 59-36. Three newcomers made their debut for Vermont in the exhibition game: Lehigh-transfer Alex Jensen, who had a game-high seven assists, Martin Klimes (two points, four rebounds) and Matt Hanson (three points, three rebounds). The Catamounts open their regular season Monday, November 17th at Nevada in the opening round of the Owens Corning Preseason NIT.-Athletic Communications