Taliaferro’s late basket sends Fairfield past Denver 86-85
SEATTLE (AP) — Landon Taliaferro scored 21 points including the go-ahead layup with 1:41 left and Fairfield beat Denver 86-85 in an Elgin Baylor Classic game on Sunday.
Neftali Alvarez made a layup after Taliaferro’s and Felix Lemetti’s 3-pointer with 18 seconds left gave Fairfield an 86-80 lead. Elvin Rodriguez made a pair of free throws and Ronnie Harrell Jr. hit a 3 for Denver with five seconds left. The Pioneers called a timeout and fouled Ade Murkey, who missed the front end of a one-and-one, but Denver never got off a shot.
Wassef Methnani’s jump shot with 14:44 remaining put the Stags ahead 59-46 before Denver outscored them 28-14 over the next 10 minutes for a 74-73 lead with three free throws by Harrell.
The Stags sped to a 22-8 lead on Aidas Kavaliauskas’ layup with 11:31 before halftime. Lemetti’s 3-pointer four minutes later made it 33-16. Fairfield shot 17 of 32 (53 percent) in the first half, including 9 of 16 from 3-point range, and led 46-38 at intermission.
Alvarez scored 13 points, Methnani and Lemetti each scored 12 and Jonathan Kasibabu had 10 with five rebounds for Fairfield (2-5).
Harrell led Denver with 21 points, David Nzekwesi scored 17, Elvin Rodriguez, 16 and Murkey, 13.