A newly renovated Littlejohn Coliseum made its debut on Thursday night as the Tigers hosted Lander in an exhibition game. Fans of all ages came out to see Clemson defeat the Bearcats and enjoy all the new amenities available to them this season. Walking into the coliseum was like opening a new book, and many fans are anxious to see what kind of story the 2016-17 Tigers will tell.
“Being in the new facility and not being away from home was very exciting for us. The crowd had a good energy all night,” guard Shelton Mitchell said.
Making their debut alongside Littlejohn were Mitchell and Marcquise Reed, both in their first year of eligibility for the Tigers. After sitting out for a season while the Tigers were playing in Greenville, Mitchell and Reed were antsy to hit the court and put on a show.
Head coach Brad Brownell was pleased with the performance that the duo put on throughout the night.
“Both guys have been with us for a year, so that certainly helped. They both bring good previous experience to the table. I liked how Shelton really tried to share the ball,” he said.
The pair had equally impressive outings Thursday night. In the first half, Mitchell put up nine points, three shy of team-leader Avry Holmes. He finished with 15, while adding five assists.
After a hot first half, Mitchell and Reed left most of the scoring up to the rest of the offense in the second. Junior Gabe DeVoe led the team in scoring with 20 points adding, “We have a lot of offensive firepower at every position.”
The new players brought with them a positive energy, lighting up the court every time they got the opportunity. The energy soon caught on in the crowd, who was along for every moment of the dominant Tiger victory. With every missed shot, they would let out a sigh in unison and with every dunk, free throw and three-pointer they would jump out of their seats.
The coliseum and lineup may be new, but one thing that will never change is the Tiger faithful and the passion for Clemson basketball.
April 19, 2019