Rodney Green scored 23 points and had five assists to lead La Salle to an 83-80 victory over Hampton on Saturday in the season opener for both teams.
The Explorers took a 25-12 lead, capped by Green’s 3-pointer with 10:11 left in the first half. The Pirates then went on a 17-1 run to take a 29-26 lead with 6:40 remaining, but La Salle used a 9-2 spurt to close out the half 35-31.
The Explorers built a double-digit lead, the biggest at 70-56 with 4:21 left following a 3-pointer by Ruben Guillendeaux.
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Darrion Pellum scored 17 of his 21 points in the second half for Hampton, which trailed 81-74 with 15 seconds left. Pellum and Vincent Sampson then hit two 3-pointers down the stretch.
Aaric Murray added 16 points and 11 rebounds for the Explorers and Yves Mekongo chipped in 16 points.
Simpson had 18 points and Michael Freeman added 16 for Hampton.