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McClinton lifts Miami past Robert Morris

Dec 14, 2008 - 9:59 PM CORAL GABLES, Florida (Ticker) -- Jack McClinton scored 18 of his 24 points in the first half Sunday, leading No. 25 Miami to a 70-62 victory over Robert Morris.

Dwayne Collins and James Dews added 11 points apiece for the Hurricanes (7-2), who used some stifling defense in the first half to take a 37-25 advantage at the break.

"This is a good win for our guys," Miami coach Frank Haith said. "We anticipated this being that type of game because Robert Morris is a good team. They won 26 games last year, and they play hard."

McClinton made three 3-pointers and went 6-of-8 from the field in the opening 20 minutes.

"Well, Jack got hot and made some shots, but one of the other things I like about Jack is that he got nine rebounds," Haith said. "He did some good things when we needed him."

Jimmy Langhurst and Gary Wallace each scored 13 points and Jeremy Chappell 12 for Robert Morris (4-6), which was playing its first ranked team of the season.

Tied at 18-18 with under 10 minutes remaining in the first half, the Hurricanes reeled off 11 straight points to build a working margin. McClinton made a free throw and converted a layup and 3-pointer in the burst when the Hurricanes held the Colonials scoreless for over six minutes.

Robert Morris recuperated at the break, using a 12-4 surge to start the second half to pull within 41-37. Langhurst converted two free throws and drilled a shot from the arc during the run.

Langhurst's 3-pointer with 6:04 left got the Colonials as close as 57-55.

"We just had to regroup in the second half," Langhurst said. "We had to limit our turnovers and just kind of get over the hump. We were down by, two and three, but we didn't contain Jack (McClinton) and that was one of our keys to the second half."

However, McClinton made four free throws in a 7-0 run which gave the Hurricanes control for good.

"Robert Morris is a great team. They have great shooters and they execute well," McClinton said. "I think that's really going to help us because their great shooters forced us to talk on defense."

Miami made 20-of-30 free throws compared to a 5-of-9 effort at the line for Robert Morris.