SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Jack Cooley scored the first nine points of the game and finished with 19, Scott Martin pulled down 17 rebounds and No. 22 Notre Dame beat Evansville 58-49 Saturday in the season opener for both teams.
Cooley got the Irish off to a quick start and it wasn’t until he took his first breather 5:34 into the game that another Notre Dame player scored when Eric Atkins hit a jumper. Cooley had 13 points on 4 of 4 shooting in the opening half to help send the Irish into the break with a 28-21 lead.
Notre Dame coach Mike Brey limited Cooley’s minutes in the second half after the center picked up his third foul on an offensive charge just 1:22 into the period.
Ryan Sawvell had 12 points and 11 rebounds for Evansville.
NO. 15 MISSOURI 83, SO. ILLINOIS-EDWARDSVILLE 69
In Columbia, Mo., Laurence Bowers had 20 points and seven rebounds in his return from a knee injury that sidelined him all of last season, leading Missouri to a season-opening victory over Southern Illinois-Edwardsville.
Bowers outscored the Cougars 10-2 by himself during a two-minute stretch early in the second half for the Tigers, who are ranked to start the season for a third consecutive year.
NO. 6 KENTUCKY 90, DELAWARE STATE 50
In Lexington, Ky., the Kentucky women played the type of game they needed to in preparation for Tuesday’s showdown against top-ranked Baylor.
A’dia Mathies scored 16 points and the Wildcats routed Delaware State in their season opener.
The Wildcats looked sharp throughout as they tuned up for the daunting task of facing Brittney Griner and the defending NCAA champion Lady Bears, who have won 41 consecutive games.
NO. 12 OKLAHOMA 69, CREIGHTON 48
In Omaha, Neb., Aaryn Ellenberg scored 19 points and Oklahoma won its opening game.
NO. 16 VANDERBILT 82, MCNEESE STATE 71
In Nashville, Tenn., Tiffany Clarke scored 14 of her 24 points in the second half as Vanderbilt beat McNeese State in the season opener for both teams.
NO. 21 PURDUE 82, USC UPSTATE 47
In West Lafayette, Ind., KK Houser scored 17 points, leading four Purdue players in double figures, and the Boilermakers routed South Carolina Upstate.
Drey Mingo added 15 points and Courtney Moses and Taylor Manuel contributed 12 points apiece for Purdue in its season opener. The Boilermakers led 38-25 at halftime in the first meeting between the schools.