COLORADO SPRINGS – The Johnson Wales men's basketball team is 4-0 for the first time in team history after a 94-87 comeback win over UT Tyler on Saturday at the Rocky Mountain Thanksgiving Classic hosted by Colorado College.
The team's previous best start came during the inaugural 2003-04 season when the Wildcats were 3-0 before falling to McPherson College.
The Wildcats (4-0) trailed by five at halftime and by as many as 10 in the second frame before a pair of runs created separation to keep JWU unbeaten and put the Patriots (0-2) away.
A 9-0 run led by Andrew Romero III midway through the second half sparked comeback, closing what had been a double-digit gap to one (56-55) with 12:55 to go. The Wildcats then regained the lead for good on a layup by Jordan Miles shortly after. The go-ahead basket by Miles (Memphis, Tenn.) was part of a 10-0 JWU run, which came during a six-minute stretch where the Wildcats outscored the Patriots 21-6 while holding them to 2-of-10 shooting.
Romero (Northglenn, Colo.) finished with 40 points, nine rebounds, four assists and three steals. The senior went 14-of-16 at the free throw line to power his way to his second-career 40-point game.
Miles finished with 22 points and seven rebounds, Jontrell Herman had 12 points, six boards and six assists and King Grant-Perry totaled 10 rebounds and three blocks. Kevin Avalos provided a spark off the bench with seven points in 13 minutes on a perfect 3-of-3 shooting.
UT Tyler's Darius Alford scored 29 points to pace the Patriots.
The Wildcats got off to another fast start, grabbing a 22-11 lead midway through the first half before the Patriots came storming back to take a 31-22 advantage on the heels of a 20-0 run that saw JWU go 0-for-9 from the field.
JWU was able to cut into that nine-point deficit before the break, using a short 5-1 burst to make it a 41-36 score at halftime.
Johnson & Wales returns home to host Whittier on Saturday at the Wildcat Center (4 p.m.)